Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Blog Posts Are Now on Our Website

Hi, There! 

Barb's blog is now embedded right in The Mind-full Motivator's website. Just go to www.mindfullmotivator.com and click on "blog" and you'll be able to read all the latest posts.

Be Healthy,

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Point Reyes Lighthouse
Our day trip from San Francisco yesterday took us to Point Reyes National Seashore. To get there, we had to travel narrow, winding roads that wove in and around miles and miles of hills. We saw elk, deer and their newborn fawn, dairy farms labeled by the alphabet, and lots and lots of cattle. I loved having to wait as a herd of Holsteins were directed across the road to get to the pastures on the other side. Nothing like getting out of the city!

The trip was not for the unfit. When we arrived,
EMT's were attending a woman evidently having chest pains while climbing up the stairs. Umm. Fair warning. The half mile walk to the stairs wasn't bad. And, really, descending hundreds of stairs as we came closer to the old lighthouse the beautiful pacific waves wasn't too bad. My legs just felt a bit shaky and wobbly like jelly. 
Barb's half way up!

But going back up was a different story. Oh, yeah. Climbing those 380 stairs was definitely a high intensity work out. We all felt each of our quad muscles screaming out at the end out the climb, and were very thankful we'd made it! Phew. Really, keeping up your fitness level allows you to see and experience so much more in life.

Afterward, we spent a little time strolling on the sandy beach and getting our feet covered in that wonderfully cool Pacific ocean water. A perfect day in my book...

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Mike's Journey Losing One Hundred Pounds

Mike: before, after
Hi all, I’m Mike.  I have struggled with my weight pretty much since elementary school.  Now in my mid-thirties I decided to make some changes for good to have a more active, enjoyable life! 

Superhero Mike's running a 10K
Over the past year I have been on a journey to create a healthier, more mindful, version of myself.  Using the lessons that I have learned over the past several years from Barb, I have lost over 100 pounds, completed a 10k race, and I am training for a 10-mile race and a half marathon!

While I’ve been on this journey, several people have asked me “What’s the trick?” or “What’s your secret?”  To me the “secret” is no secret at all; it’s doing several small things that add up to making a difference in your overall health. 

For me the four key pieces of advice that I would pass on to anyone who wanted to make a change are:
  1. YOU have to want it.   Over the years I have tried fad diets.  You know “drink this everyday and magically the weight will fall off” or “do this workout for three months and you’re cured…” which for a temporary fix they were successful, but didn’t change any of the bad habits that I had.  And why did I try these crazy schemes?  Because this person, or that person told me that I should, not because I wanted to.  It took me wanting to make the change for it to truly stick and be effective!
  2.   Take control!  Be the one who controls your food choices.  Obviously, the best way to do this is to prepare your own meals.  However, it’s pretty unrealistic to do this for every meal!  How I have combated this issue to plan, plan, and plan some more for these situations.  If I know I am going to be eating a meal at a restaurant, I will go online and decide what I’m going to order ahead of time so I’m not tempted to make a less optimal choice on the fly when I get there.  I’ve also learned to ask for exactly what I want and make substitutions all the time.  Don’t be scared to do this!  Not once, has a server told me that they couldn’t do what I had asked.  If I am going to a friend or relatives for lunch or dinner I will ask what’s on the menu so I can plan the rest of my day around that and also suggest a dish that I could bring that I know fits into my plan for the day.
  3.  MOVE!  Get out there and exercise.  When I started all this last year I wasn’t running six miles right away, I started small.  Walking a mile a day, then gradually increasing the distance and intensity as my fitness level increased.
  4.  Don’t be too hard on yourself.  You will make mistakes, or make choices that you may regret.  It’s okay!!!  Learn from the situation, let it go, and get back on track immediately (not tomorrow, or next Monday).

Monday, May 26, 2014

Thoughts on Memorial Day

Memorial Day used to be one day. May 30th. And it was meant for remembering those who gave their lives for our country. Schools, stores...most everything was closed that day. And almost everyone I knew marched in the town parade as part of the band, scouts, 4-H...or something. 

But, 1971 changed that.  The Uniform Monday Holiday act, gave Memorial Day, along with other holidays, a yearly Monday spot to assure a 3-day holiday weekend for all. Hey, we love our 3 day weekends. No work for 3 days! Kids home for 3 days... More time to go somewhere and do something!

Whether the 3 day weekend was good for the actual observance of Memorial day, I'm not going to judge. But, I do want to connect the dots on 3-day holiday weekends and an increase in overindulging in less healthy foods.

Every event that comes along that changes our daily routine can play havoc on weight loss or management efforts. Weekends are more difficult for most people, because the routine demanded in the week is simply not there. Holidays are even more challenging because they add a celebration element to the lack of routine. And when a 3 or 4 day holiday weekend comes along, it can really screw things up. Out of routine and celebration mode.

Just be aware that you need to be much more vigilant during long holiday weekends. Keep your head on. Take fresh fruits and veggies with you to all those gatherings. Focus on eating slowly, enjoying friends and family, and being active. 

Having fun doesn't mean giving up on your weight loss/wellness plan and diving head first into the bag of potato chips or pie and telling yourself that the holiday weekend doesn't really count. It means mindfully choosing to act like the healthy, svelte, active person you really want to be. 

As they say..."Fake it 'til you make it!"

Monday, May 19, 2014

Movin' With the Yard Work

My neighbor is in constant motion. She stands just over 5 feet, but that small frame delivers purpose and determination...in addition to speed. When it comes lawn and garden work, no one can keep up with her. Trimming. Weeding. Planting. Harvesting. Mowing. She even mows for another neighbor. She rarely stops moving. And she's got 10 years on me. 

She's the epitome of "YES, you can count yard work as exercise!" It depends on what you're doing, but aerobic conditioning, strength training, and flexibility, can all be done outside. But, take care.

Don't go crazy as the weather turns nicer. If you've been more sloth-like all winter long, don't expect to zip right out there and mow lawn, weed the gardens and plant all in one day. That's a recipe for bit time pain and suffering. Be sure to warm up by walking and going through some general full body motions to get prepped for your yard time.

And, be mindful. When your body gets tired, listen and respect what it's saying. Fatigue means it's time to stop for the day, stretch out, and do the rest tomorrow. It doesn't mean to man-up and bust your body trying to get it all done. Respect yourself.

It's a beautiful time of year. Time to enjoy your body in motion and learn to use mindfulness to understand it's limits. You'll get along much better inside that body of yours if you do...