Monday, November 21, 2011

Turkey, and Gravy, and Stuffing.....OH MY!

What a wonderful time of year it is.  The air is cooler and cleaner, the trees are beautiful, and folks tend to be just a little bit kinder to one another!  How thankful I am for thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving kicks off the joy and excitement of family, time off from work/school, and (let's not forget) EATING!!  Everywhere you turn food is all around.  And when I say food, I don't mean grilled chicken and asparagus and protein shakes for dessert.  I am a firm believer in setting yourself for success so I have a recommendation for those on their journey.

To those who have been working hard for a while: don't let this time of year be an excuse to let yourself go.  This is not a free-for-all that you will not have to pay for later.  You have worked so hard... depending on how you decide to eat could really set you back after you have come so far.  On the same hand.  I would recommend deciding what days you will enjoy the goodness of the holidays... example: thanksgiving, weekends in December, Christmas eve and Christmas day.... and eat well the other days and working out extra hard.  The damage will be minimal and you can feel like you are not alone in the corner eating card-board food.  The "splurge" eating will be a nice change.... and come January you will probably welcome the eating better option.  When you change your eating habits you find that the way you feel after a heavy meal full of white flour and sugar leaves you lethargic, heavy, and unsatisfied.  I truly do not enjoy junk food as much as I use to (and I'm thankful!). 

To those who are kinda toying with the idea of making the change to a healthier lifestyle:  This is a hard time of year.  It doesn't mean that it isn't possible, but it will be a true test of your will-power almost immediately.  If you are teetering back and forth over if you want to do it, let me stop you right there and say "DON'T".  If you are already sitting the fence I say WAIT until January.  However, if your mind is made up, and you have a goal in mind, then go forward FULL SPEED AHEAD!  But the beginning is crucial and that means your will power will be tested from the start.

In whatever your decision is this holiday season, it's important to ALWAYS SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS.  Do not sabotage yourself.  Make it a point to exercise every day for at least 30 minutes.  Even if it is at home... find 30 minutes and pick 3-4 different exercises and "work hard".  You should be sweating and breathing heavy at the end.  Here is an at home work out you can do on those crazy days....

15 jumping jacks
8 push ups
10 sit-ups
10 squats

Set your timer for 30 minutes, turn on some tunes, and do the entire circuit over and over again until the timer chimes.  The beginning will seem easy, but after round 10 those push ups will start getting harder.  Push thru the burn, you will get your heart-rate at a nice increase, the resistance exercises will be great for your muscles, and the interval training (constant change in exercises. heart rate, and intensity) will be great for weight loss. 

Make up your mind where you are on your fitness lifestyle change.  You can do ANYTHING you set your mind to.  Do not put yourself in a place that will make you feel bad or defeated later.  Be your own BEST ADVOCATE!!  Always set yourself for a success story!!!


Monday, November 7, 2011

So You Don't Think You Are Flexible??

First of all, I would like say, that I know I have been MIA recently.  My family is in the process of moving and it is testing my time management skills.  I have found there are some things I can not control and others that I can.  Some things need to take the back seat while others need to have a little extra TLC.  Those "extra things" have been my boys.  Moving is so hard on little ones, especially ones that like consistency and are creatures of habit, like mine are.  So between trips to the school to have lunch, 2 birthdays, trick or treating, class parties, extra stories at bedtime, and lots of love.... I have had to take a break from my blogging.  I promise I will be back soon, and just in time for TURKEY DAY and CHRISTMAS PARTIES!!  I have LOTS to talk about and words of encouragement for those who think THEY JUST CAN'T DO IT!....

Now...about stretching.  I am not a naturally flexible person.  Yes, I did gymnastics for many years, and YES that doesn't seem to fit the guidelines for one that is suppose to bend on command, but in the last year I have taken on the flexibility challenge.  I started stretching for 10-15 minutes every single day.  Really Really trying to push past the uncomfortable pull from the back of my legs.  I am happy to report it has increased SO MUCH.  I can tell a difference in my Posture, in my exercise ability, and in my performance. 

Stretching helps blood flow and circulation.  Stretching helps decrease the chance of injury.  Stretching helps you FEEL better. 

So HOW is it done???  The best time to get a deep stretch is after a great work out.  Your muscles are very warm and much easier to really get that deeper pull.  As your heart begins to slow down and you are cooling down begin with your arms and shoulders because you can do that while you are walking to cool down.  Before you sit down take the time to stretch your calf muscles by standing against a curb or wall and pressing your foot into the wall.  Follow up with floor stretches.  Allow yourself to take deep breaths and hold each stretch for a minimum of 10-20 seconds a few times each.

Stretch often... Do it while you watch TV or a Movie.  You will FEEL GREAT, and maybe a little sore when you start, but that's okay, and ALWAYS A GOOD SIGN!!!

Once I get situated in my new home I will start doing pictures of these things and make videos of exercises and my stretching routines.  That will be my new year's resolution.... TAKING THE FITMOMMY BLOG TO THE NEXT LEVEL FOR YOU!!! :)