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8 Rules to Keeping Your Power Over The Holidaze

 

Keeping your power, especially during challenging seasons like ‘The Holidays’ can feel daunting with the overwhelming crush of daily to-do’s and added social events.   And before we know it, we are in the ‘Holidaze’!   How do you re-claim your power?

 

Self Knowledge is Empowering:

 

1.   Remind yourself of what makes you feel good. If it makes you feel good, you will do more of it = Joy ROI!

 

2.  Give yourself permission to do your power stuff. Elf Yourself!

 

3.  Pre-plan your week to include your empowering activities. Checking the list twice will make you especially NICE!

 

4.  Stick to your schedule and remind others why you need that time and how it benefits them when you get it. Grinch Relief or Grinch Release!

 

5.  Just say “no” to conflicting or non-empowering stuff. Holiday Steel = No Wonderland Steal.

 

6.  Don’t be afraid to re-direct, re-group, or re-schedule empowerment activities. If you Jangled . . . Re-Jingle!

 

7.  If it empowers you, find others who are empowered by the same activities. Group empowerment is . . .well. . . mega watt power! Whoville Anyone?!

 

8.  Be gentle with yourself so you can be “Merry & Bright”! Nobody knows you better than you.

 

Power is very personal to each of us and during the Holidays it is best to roll with our own self-knowledge of what makes us feel individually empowered and connected to our own lives. Tis’ the Season for a Self Indulgence Reason!

 

Power Thought: “When we bring our best to the Season we receive more of the Season’s Best.” ~ Sherry Derossett/CNC.CPT

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Success is not a lazy man’s game

 

A few years back I was given a book to read that really changed my outlook on mentoring others. It was a book called “A Hand to Guide Me.” It is by written by Denzel Washington and it is a bunch of stories by celebrities and high level business professionals about how they were able to become affluent in life. What was the theme of their success? That no one does it alone. There is no such thing as a self-made person.

You see in our efforts to climb ladders of professional and personal success we must remember that each of us owes our accomplishments to someone who believed in us with all of their heart. I know for me I have had several mentors who have made my life so much better. My mother and my father are first on that list along with my brother. Additionally, one of my college professors, Dr. Challace McMillin really helped to mold me into the person I am today.

 

The guidance of others who believe in you serves as great fuel for your present and future successes. However, even with mentorship there needs to be an element of work ethic to raise your game to the next level. One of the other great commentaries in Denzel Washington’s book is the work ethic and determination of those who are successful and their understanding of the responsibility their achievements brings. In essence, you can guide someone, but if they don’t want to put in the work then it won’t matter.

 

I’ve had my fair share of time with people where they have reached great levels of success because they were willing to be coached and they had a burning fire to work harder than the next person. The number one question people come to me for is “how can I grow my business?” I tell everyone the same answer and it is not magic or something very profound. It is very simple. What is it? You have to be willing to learn from others who are more successful than you and you must be willing to do things other people are not willing to do. Period.

 

When colleagues are not making time for important events to go to then be the one person who doesn’t make excuses and goes to the those events. When your colleagues are out for business for only themselves, make it your top priority to work hard and drive business to others. When your colleagues don’t follow through with you, always follow through with them and anyone you become acquainted with. When your colleagues are trying to do everything by themselves, go out and find someone to mentor and train you.

 

You must be a BEAST in your profession. You must have an ravenous desire to completely dominate in terms of your work ethic. There’s no other way of getting around it. Success is not a lazy man’s game. Excuses are for those who are not serious about reaching the pinnacle of their profession. If you want to be great and experience a high level of success then you must be willing to be mentored and you must be willing to outdo your counterparts.

 

I’ll leave you with this…after losing the NBA Finals to the Boston Celtics a few year ago, there was a story circulating that Kobe Bryant was so upset that he immediately practiced after the finals for the next season because he couldn’t stand defeat and he wanted to get back and win the NBA Championship. He also enlisted the guidance of legendary NBA player Hakeem Olajuwon, one of the greatest centers in the history of the game, so that he could work on, and improve his post-up moves.

 

That’s how bad Koby Bryant, one of the greatest basketball players of our time, wanted to be successful in his business. He couldn’t wait to improve his game by working hard and being coached. Settling for second has never been in his vocabulary and it shouldn’t be in your vocabulary either.

 

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Top Ten Excuses Mothers Use in Weight Loss

 

I recently came across these statistics:

U.S. Obesity Trends  and National Obesity Trends

About one-third of U.S. adults (33.8%) are obese.
Approximately 17% (or 12.5 million) of children and adolescents aged 2—19 years are obese.
[Data from the National Health and Examination Survey (NHANES)]

 

Trends by State 1985–2010

During the past 20 years, there has been a dramatic increase in obesity in the United States and rates remain high. In 2010, no state had a prevalence of obesity less than 20%. Thirty-six states had a prevalence of 25% or more; 12 of these states (Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and West Virginia) had a prevalence of 30% or more.

I have to admit, my jaw dropped when I read this information. I perceived that more of my neighbors in town and those I saw during out-of-town travel seemed to be more “fluffy” but I had no idea the numbers were at this level! Are you wondering why these numbers are so high (and growing…no pun intended)? If you carry a little…or a lot…of “fluff” on your body, ask yourself “why?”

 

My weight loss journey has been just a little over a year now. OK, if I am really honest, it has been over the last 10 years! My oldest child is 10 and when I was pregnant with him, my top weight was 196 on a 5’4” frame (I am now fluctuating between 130 and 135). I asked myself the same question I just posed to you…”why?” I had all sorts of reasons to not to take care of my body. Here is my personal list.

 

10.  I am pregnant (or will be again in the near future) and I need the extra calories/weight to support that precious baby growing inside me.

9.  I may be a little soft around the middle but I am healthy because I take a stroll in the evening with my husband and child(ren).

8.  Mommies aren’t supposed to be hot or sexy. After all, we don’t want to traumatize the kids if they see someone besides daddy checking me out.

7.  Do looks really matter that much? I am just as comfortable in my size 12 pants as I would be in a 4.

6.  I DESERVE to eat 5 tacos and drink a large Diet Coke at 10:00p…I have had a hard day!

5.  None of my friends exercise. (i.e. I might not fit in with them if I start exercising).

4.  My husband loves me no matter what…even if I keep adding “fluff” (Please understand this is not about vanity. As a wife I am simply very tuned into the fact that it feeds a man’s ego to have a hot wife; and vice versa for women. Taking care of your body is an expression of your love for your partner.)

3.  I don’t care what anyone thinks about me. I am my own person!

2.  I am getting too old to worry about adding muscle…I just need to accept that the mommy-body comes with age.

And…drum roll please….

 

1.  I am too tired to care! I have three kids, a husband, a job, social commitments, a house to take care of, laundry to do, etc., etc., etc.

 

Do any of these sound familiar? In future months I’ll look at each one of these excuses in more detail. I want to share with you how I overcame them and chose health over disease…weight loss instead of “fluffiness”. I hear so many women (and men for that matter) lament the fact that their pants are getting tight…or they aren’t what they once were…or the fact that their upper arm keeps waving once they have stopped the action. I want you to KNOW that you can be BETTER, STRONGER and FASTER as you gain experience in life! You are an amazing person on the inside….let it shine through every part of your being on the outside!

 

 

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Top 10 Quotes- to keep you on track!

 

Every once in a while when I feel like I’m falling behind and need a pick me up, there are a handful of great quotes that get me back on track. Here are a few (in no particular order) that I hope sparks something inside you to move forward and make your mark on the world.

• “If you want to succeed in the world you must make your own opportunities as you go on. The man who waits for some seventh wave to toss him on dry land will find that the seventh wave is a long time a-coming. You can commit no greater folly than to sit by the road side until someone comes along and invites you to ride with him to wealth or influence.” John B. Gough

 

• “A mistake is simply another way of doing things.” Katharine Graham

 

• “If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.” Jim Rohn

 

• “Gentlemen, we are going to relentlessly chase perfection, knowing full well we will not catch it, because nothing is perfect. But we are going to relentlessly chase it, because in the process we will catch excellence. I am not remotely interested in just being good.” Vince Lombardi

 

• “You can’t always get what you want but if you try sometimes, you just might find you get what you need” The Rolling Stones

 

• “Most people work just hard enough not to get fired and get paid just enough money not to quit” George Carlin

 

• “Winning is a habit. Watch your thoughts, they become your beliefs. Watch your beliefs, they become your words. Watch your words, they become your actions. Watch your actions, they become your habits. Watch your habits, they become your character.” Vince Lombardi

 

• “If you can dream it, then you can achieve it. You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.” Zig Zigler

 

• “Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.” John Wooden

 

• “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face.” Mike Tyson

 

 

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10 Motivational Strategies to Fitness Success!

 

Motivational Miracles-Get on the road to success!

 

 IT ALL BEGINS WITH GOAL SETTING. You need to know what you want to do with your body and that will keep you motivated. Think small, realistic goals. Take small steps along the way to making big changes. If you contemplate losing 30-40 pounds it is just so overwhelming. You need to focus on losing one or two pounds per week to get to your goal. When it comes off the right way it will stay off for good.

 

Here are 10 motivational strategies to get you on the road to success:

Strategy #1: 

If you are not working out right now, start your new program with a one-day-per-week approach. Take a walk. Stretch. Increase your time. Change or add something each week.

 

Strategy #2 

From a nutritional point of view, that change could be as simple as drinking more water. Most people do not drink enough water. Our bodies are made up of 99% of just six elements: oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, calcium, and phosphorus. We need a lot of water! Keep a water bottle on your desk and try to drink a little more each day. Make a habit of keeping water with you in the car at all times as well.

 

Strategy #3 

Cut down on starchy carbs like bread, pasta, rice, cereal and potatoes. I am just asking you to cut back on them, not to take these foods completely out of your diet. Try not to eat them after 2 p.m. each day. Your best alternatives are multi-grain breads, brown rice, sweet potatoes and oatmeal. 

 

Strategy #4 

Ease off the soft drinks or how we say in the Midwest, pop! I am not a fan of diet pop either. Stay away from sugar substitutes. Use Stevia instead of Equal or Sweet & Low. For example, a 12-ounce can of Coca-Cola and Caffeine-Free Coca Cola contain 140 calories and 39g of sugar. Yikes! You can’t get away with drinking 3-4 cans of this stuff per day! Cut back to one or two cans. Eventually, use pop as a special treat. Soft drinks contain way too much sugar and ton of empty calories that you can do without.

 

Strategy #5 

Eliminate or cut back on fast food because there is too much fat and sodium in fast-food and other highly processed food. If you are eating fast-food 3-4 days per week, then cut back to 2-3 days, then once a week. Order sensibly at a fast-food place and order a salad and chicken instead of a greasy burger. 

 

Strategy #6  

Eat smaller portions at every meal. There’s a tendency to eat too much in a sitting especially when dining out. Cut back by two or three mouthfuls. Leave some food on your plate and take it home with you. You can eat it later or the next day. This takes self-discipline. If losing weight is your goal, get in the habit of making sacrifices at meal time in pursuit of looking and feeling better.

 

Strategy #7 

Buy your foods at grocery stores or fresh markets. Prepare healthier meals at home instead of going out to eat all the time and being tempted to overeat or cheat on a weekday

 

Strategy #8  

Cut back or eliminate buying junk food when grocery shopping. Think ahead and don’t buy it because if it’s in the pantry you are going to be tempted. 

 

Strategy #9 

When you are eating healthy and clean, allow for one or two cheat meals a week. This will help you stay on target; enjoy your food even more and it will keep you sane. We need to enjoy life and our food so eat healthy during the week and enjoy a wonderful dinner and dessert that you have been looking forward to on the weekend.

 

 

Strategy #10

Plan your meals ahead of time. If you want to focus on improving your physique, you will have to make an effort to think ahead and strategize your meal plan. Make a healthy breakfast before you go to work. This is the most important meal for a great start to your day – break the fast! Plan or bring your lunch and a healthy protein snack to eat around 3-4pm. This way, you will eat every three to four hours – and eat healthy – to maximize energy levels throughout the day. You will be burning fat and calories all day long. 

 


 

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Exercise-Injury Prevention & PRICE Protocol

 

We exercise for a myriad of reasons. Some of these include the reduction of body fat, weight management, mental health, to feel better or just for the overall positive health benefits. However, there are certain injury prevention protocols that should be followed. The last thing any of us wants is prolonged downtime in the form of a preventable injury.’
Here are a few protocols to follow.

Always warm up prior to any exercise activity. Warming up is important as it prepares the body and the mind for physical exertion. Warming up the body increases circulation, helps ligaments, tendons and muscles loosen up and slowly moves you into the mindset of “Okay now it’s time to work out”.

 

I always suggest light stretching immediately after the warm-up with more intense stretching at the end of a good workout. Again it is important to get the body ready for exercise. Light stretching at the outset does this. Include stretches for the entire body with more emphasis on injury prone areas such as the hamstrings, groin area and the lower back. At the end of each workout, when your muscles are warmer and more pliable, you can move into deeper stretching, while focusing on lengthening by holding stretches longer.

 

It’s important to know the difference between muscles soreness, a minor twinge or strain and a more serious injury. Typical muscle soreness is normal and a condition you really want to work through. You do this by warming up, light stretching and participating in your workout with maybe light modifications to sore muscle groups.

 

If you feel a minor twinge or strain during your workout or during physical activity know that this is a common occurrence. Almost everyone strains or pulls a muscle or one time or another. Typically, you will feel a sharp pain followed by a dull ache. When this happens stop whatever you are doing and end your workout for the day. Use the PRICE acronym; prevention, rest, ice, compression, elevation are the typical protocol for most minor strains or pulls. Here is the PRICE protocol.

 

Prevention: Protect an injury from further damage. Do not put excess strain on the injured area until the pain is completely gone.

Rest: Give an injury time to heal. This is very important as many people try to return to their normal routine before the injury has healed properly and end up reinjuring the area, which in turn creates longer downtime.

Ice: Use ice (ice packs) to reduce the pain and inflammation for the first 3 to 5 days after an injury. A top orthopedist once told me if every one of his patients would ice an injury he would be out of business.

Compression: Wrap the injured area if need be to reduce swelling.

Elevation: Elevate the injury above the heart to reduce the flow of blood to the injured area and reduce the swelling as well.

 

A more serious injury such as a sharp, excruciating snap or pop with continued, localized pain requires greater attention. Injuries like a pulled groin muscle, bad ankle sprain or severe tendinitis need to be addressed immediately. Stop all exercise that affects an injured area and see a qualified orthopedist or doctor immediately. A qualified medical professional can advise you on the extent of the injury and the proper protocol to follow as well as your exercise guidelines.

 

Stay away from weekend warrior mania! I know it’s a blast to go out with the buddies on the weekends for that pickup game of hoops, flag football, tennis or mountain biking. It feels great to go back in time and participate in sporting activities you did in your youth. You just have to remember your current age and fitness condition and don’t try to turn back the clock in one day. There is nothing wrong with participating in sports; however, as you get older it becomes even more important to warm up properly and to do some light stretching before any sport or exercise activity. Injuries can and do happen so you don’t need to encourage them.

 

Lastly, make sure you always cool down after any exercise session or sporting event. Rehydrate and give your body some recuperation time. Improper cool down can result in greater lactic acid build up and onset muscle soreness. Dehydration and insufficient rest saps you of needed energy.

 

So go out and have fun. Be active, but also be smart about it.

 

Michael George © 2011

 

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Weight Loss Tips for Couples

Walk into any fitness gym and you will find it filled with single people. Yes, they’ll be some married girls and guys and those in relationships, but take a poll and singles will outnumber the others. When you are single, the motivation is high to look good which places a priority on exercising and smart dieting. The name of the game is sex appeal and being physically attractive.

 

Then comes marriage or perhaps a committed relationship and priorities begin to shift. For the male perspective, I interviewed several men from ages 24-54, working in all levels of employment, from auto technician to vice president of an international company. Every one of them had a similar response to why we gain weight after being in a relationship- getting comfortable.

 

Men and women lose the intense motivation to look good for the opposite sex when they are happily in a relationship. As one guy stated, “I’m not in the market anymore, so I’m more relaxed and not so concerned about the physical part.” Married or cohabiting people tend to become more sedentary than their single dating peers and settle into a routine. Since gaining weight also comes from a tendency to pick up your spouse’s eating habits, the benefit of losing weight together is eating the same healthy food and supporting one another.

 

It’s well known that the buddy system is an effective weight loss technique, but having your buddy live in the same house and eat the same food increases your chances. Encouragement and compliments from your partner is a big motivator! Extra weight can leave you with less energy and less enthusiasm. For some, especially women, not feeling as attractive can affect your sexual relationship. As couples work together to lose weight, renewed vitality, improved energy and body image kick start the sexual desire and passion. Now that’s motivation!

 

Creating a weight loss plan as a couple increases the chances of sticking to it and being successful. Here are some tips to jump start you on your way:

  1. Schedule regular fun fitness dates. Plan a hike, filling a backpack with fruit, low-fat cheese, whole grain crackers and plenty of water. At the end of the hike, have a picnic.
  2. Make eating a shared and enjoyable time. Shop together for healthy foods; plan fun, healthy menus; try out new recipes; cook together.
  3. Exercise together. Even if you don’t want to go to the gym together, take a long, brisk walk together or ride bikes. Or for the more daring couple, take a zumba class together, a major calorie burner!

Have fun and enjoy your new healthy lifestyle together!

 

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Fitness Assessments – An Important Screening Tool Before Starting a Fitness Program

 

Regardless of your age, your current fitness level, or your health history, it’s always important to make sure that exercise is safe and appropriate for you before embarking on a new exercise program.

We’ve all heard the advice before starting an exercise program: “See your doctor before you begin.” Often, many adults disregard this advice, presuming that it doesn’t really apply to them. However, regardless of your age, your current fitness level, or your health history, it’s always important to make sure that exercise is safe and appropriate for you before embarking on a new exercise program.

Fitness assessments — also known as pre-participation health screenings, or fitness tests — are important screening tools to determine the presence of risk factors and any symptoms of cardiovascular, pulmonary, and metabolic diseases, as well as other health conditions which may be adversely affected by exercise. The fitness assessment provides key information that can be used to develop a prescription of exercise that helps you achieve your health goals quickly, but safely.

 

These can range from simple self-administered questionnaires, to a physical examination and even complex diagnostic screening tests. Typically, the physician creating your exercise prescription will determine the screening procedures appropriate for his or her patient population.

 

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) suggests three levels of fitness testing prior to participation in an exercise or sports program. In a Level 1 Screening, only a self-administered questionnaire is completed. The Level 2 Screening is more detailed, and can involve a medical history, physical examination, and laboratory testing.


 Level 3 Screening involves an even more detailed physical examination and exercise stress testing.

 

Most often, only the first level screening is performed. However, according to the ACSM, it is not inappropriate to perform all three levels of fitness testing, since the information obtained from all three screening steps can actually enhance your exercise prescription’s safety and effectiveness.

 

Fitness assessments typically focus on identifying the presence of major cardiovascular risk factors, looking for symptoms suggesting possible cardiovascular, pulmonary, or metabolic disorders.

 

However, other important areas of consideration include your baseline joint range of motion and level of flexibility, since design of your exercise program should ideally take these into consideration in order to be completely safe. Your body composition and a test of your strength and endurance should also be performed, primarily to obtain a baseline so that you can see how much you’ve improved by the end of your exercise prescription.

 

Finally, perhaps the most important part of a fitness test is to make sure that those who have demonstrated some risks or health concerns are referred for additional evaluation. The presence of health risks doesn’t necessarily preclude you from participating in a fitness program, but your exercise prescription may need to be altered to allow for safe participation and to maximize health benefits.

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Cardio Interval Training is High Intesity Training

 

Need a way to fit a quick yet effective Cardio Interval Training should be incorporated into your exercise program? Try high intensity training for a Fat Burning, Low Time Consuming alternative to maximize your workout. By alternating intervals of high intensity sprints with medium intensity runs you can easily target and maintain an appropriate cardio heart rate, thus burning more calories. It is suggested to do 6 repetitions of each high intensity training interval with 30 seconds of rest between sets.

 

This is a great way to shed those extra pounds and get the fit body you’ve been wanting without the need of bulky fitness equipment.  Also, if you are on a time crunch but do not want to sacrifice a well rounded exercise program; try pushing your intensity levels a little higher, and not resting  between cardio Intervals, instead of adding more repetitions.   This way you not only keep the Cardio aspect of your exercise program, but you increase your top running speeds, and max out your performance as well. Though you might only run a couple miles this way, you’ll feel like you ran 10!

It’s time to pull out that swimsuit or to shop for a new one! In addition to the normal protocol of waxing, self-tanning, a pedicure and any other bikini ritual you may have, we have to take a long hard look at what’s been hiding under those jeans all winter and spring.   But no worries! Here’s a fun fat-burning cardio workout that, along with a healthy diet, will have you in the best shape of your life before you know it!

Cardio Interval Training is referred to as HIT (High Intensity Training), the basic idea is that you alternate between bursts of high-intensity work and recovery periods of lower intensity work. I love it for those days when I have to save a little time because you can get a lot done in less time with this workout. Let’s use the trusty treadmill as an example.

 

Always begin with your normal warm-up of about five to eight minutes to build a little heat. Then adjust your treadmill speed, and hit it hard with one minute of high-intensity running. Think of it as a 60-second burst of energy. I like to visualize that I am running towards something like the water line of the beach. Push your speed up to as high as you can safely go. Be careful here, and focus on good running form.

 

Walkers can amp up their power walking and speed up to a similar interval, too. Once that minute is over–and you will be so glad it is! Now, reduce your speed to one half of your high-intensity speed, and recover for a two-minute interval. This will feel great and will fly by. Then, repeat the one-minute, high intensity training intervals again. If you repeat this one-minute, high-intensity/two-minute recovery six times, you can be headed for the showers in 30 minutes, including a warm up and cool down and a quick quad and calf stretch. You can build on this basic interval-training plan by increasing the duration of your workout. Jump from six to eight to 10 repetitions of the series.

 

You can also add incline to your high intensity intervals. Adjust your treadmill to a respectable incline and run as fast as you can up that hill then reset to a flat level for recovery. My favorite way to interval train is with a friend. The rules are these. We converse only during recovery when you should be able to talk fairly easily once you have caught your breath. The moment we begin our high-intensity interval, all talking stops–we focus and we run like crazy.

 

We can only pick up our conversation again when we are into the next recovery period. I have literally broken off in mid-sentence, run a strong minute high-intensity interval, and picked up right where I left off! The way I look at it, interrupting a conversation for a minute is well worth it knowing that it will pay off BIG!

 

Lazenby, G. Get Your Bikini Body with Interval Training. Retrieved August 29, 2009, from Live Strong Web site: http://www.livestrong.com/article/10002-bikini-body-with-interval-training/