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  • Blog, Exercise, Tom

    Something… Everyday!

    Taking time for ourselves is one the hardest things to do for most of us. Then, add a full-time job, a spouse, and sprinkle a few children into the mix… Overwhelming isn’t it?!

    There are tons of reasons why we can’t get our workout commitment accomplished. On the flip side we, as a society, also waste about 2 hours a day on social media. So, even if it is only for ten minutes, do something that makes a positive impact on your fitness. Walking, 7 ½ minute workouts, tabata circuits… these are just a few things that can be done even on the busiest days.

    If we tell ourselves that we are too busy, do not have enough time, or are too tired, we will never find that “Fire” to keep our health or fitness. It’s called rephrasing Self Talk.  What we need to tell ourselves is what/where there is time to get something positive done.

    • I can’t afford to join a gym, but I can do an exercise video.
    • I don’t have the energy to run today, but I can walk.
    • I’m tired and want to take the elevator, but the stairs will do me some good.

    Role models are critical to our Self Talk. Humans learn throughout life by watching others and then replicating behaviors and movement.  Role Models are the push we need for self-improvement.  I’ve been fortunate to have fantastic role models, thanks to my Dad and Mom.

    Health science is also making advancements in understanding the power of just small changes in our lives.  Dr. Mike Evans or “DocMikeEvans” does an incredible job of describing the impact of just a little exercise on his Youtube Health Channel.  He’s a really interesting guy.  Check out “23 ½ Hours”.

    In case you didn’t know… in 2015, the US released a new set of guidelines for recommended levels of physical activity.   The prior simple 3 days a week of 30 minutes of moderate exercise is now a new minimum of 300 minutes of moderate or 150 minutes vigorous activity spread out through the week.

  • Blog, Exercise, Tom

    Your Inner Strength

    Strong… driven… motivated! All are terms I’ve heard used to describe those who are regular exercisers.  I have found that anyone can have this strength!

    When it comes to describing an inner source of strength, I have always preferred the term “fire in the belly”. I had a high school soccer coach that made it our mantra one season. When spoken, that term alone reminded the team instantly that our commitment to our team and our soccer season was the priority.

    My advice, keep it simple.  I’ve observed that people get so caught up in the specifics of health or fitness and then lose their motivation before they even really get started.  Commitment is the most important factor in success.

    As a society, we have a preconceived notion of what a healthy lifestyle is… what fitness looks like… based on what we see on magazines, television, posts on Instagram. Let those images go.

    Here’s my take on finding an inner, unshakeable, source of strength:

    1. Give yourself a break, it’s an individual sport at the beginning.
    2. Make your Workouts specific and goal driven.
    3. Take your life stage, abilities and circumstances into account. For some, Tai Chi, Yoga, or even walking is a great place to start.
    4. Commit, and stay committed by setting aside time in your calendar. Back off, if you’ve put too challenging of goals in front of you.  It doesn’t need to be earth shattering!

    For a majority of the people that I work with, the act of commitment activates their inner source of strength.  And, then as they go, exercise makes it self-perpetuating.

    One question that I frequently hear is “Why do you train?” or “What keeps you motivated?”.

    My response is always the same! I pull up the picture of my wife and 3 sons that I keep as the home screen of my iPad. I’m constantly reminded that my boys are growing fast. And I want to stay ahead of them as long as I can!

    How do you find your inner source of strength? Share it in the comments so we can all help each other continue to reach our fitness goals!

  • Blog, Exercise, Tom

    American Heart Month

    February marks American Heart MonthThere are many changes we can do in our lifestyles to reduce the risk of Heart Disease. But in this day and age, our social activities combined with the technology that surrounds us at work and at home require us to act with purpose.  To make an active choice.

    Think about it…we hurry up to go sit, in a car, at a desk, or at your kids soccer game.  Sitting is our societal norm and a strong predictor for cardiovascular disease, hence the saying Sitting is the new smoking.

    A study by Petal et al (2010) found that “The time spent sitting was independently associated with total mortality, regardless of physical activity level. Public health messages should include both being physically active and reducing time spent sitting.” So make a goal to get up for a few minutes every hour and move around. Set an alarm or get a movement tracker and use it, whether it is to go to the bathroom, refill a water bottle, or stretch your legs.

    Just get up and move!