3 Simple Exercises to Keep You Fit

I know that everyone is always excited in January and ready to change themselves.  By February, you are slightly less excited.  And usually, by March, most people have fizzled out.  What about if you could just improve on 3 exercises?  That’s it.  Just 3 things to do to keep you going.

3 Simple Exercises to Keep You Fit:

  1. Plank pose, which is called kumbhakasana in Sanskrit, can help you to engage your core.  When I first started yoga, mind you, I could not hold much weight on my wrists, so I assumed it was my wrists, typing, etc.  Just all around bad posture that made it difficult.  I will not forget how difficult the variation of side plank was for me.  I could not do it.  So in order to get better with a plank, here is what you need to do.  Begin on all fours, and make sure your hands are under your shoulders.  The key is the breath as this is the start of a push-up.  So in order to show you what I mean, here is a photo.  The best thing about learning to plank is that you WILL get better the more you practice it.
  2. Using a Kettlebell.  I read this article about 4 years ago in a magazine on the benefits of a kettlebell and I just had to try it.  I did the kettle bell swings, and I combined it with squats.  It was better for my back, but the kettlebell did take some getting used to.  All in all it was easy to do at home whenever I needed to just get a few sets in.  But make sure to link breathing with it.  Always, always link your breath to your routine.
  3. Boat pose.  In my yoga classes, my students always groan during my core section.  But they have groaned less and less and been more focused as I told them I had a C-SECTION and ALL my stomach muscles were cut and I couldn’t even do one boat to yacht…as a friend called it, at first.  I am not kidding.  When I started my journey over 2 years ago, everything was just out of whack.  I can now start in boat pose, and use a block between my ankles and hike up to touch it.  That is my boat to yacht variation.  If you want to start out slow, use your sitz bones and lean back, but keep your hands under your knees on the back of your thighs and lean back.  Keep your hands there until you can extend your legs.  It’s okay to stay at the beginning of the pose.  I did for a long time.

Side-plank variation as mentioned above:


If you want to know more about my 4 Weeks to Wellness, check out this link.  Or if you are interested in my other coaching offerings, you can read more under “Work with Me”.



4 Weeks to Wellness.

4 Weeks to Wellness and why you want it in your life!

Hi friends, wellness can be yours again!  Not long ago, I was trapped in my body and it was a completely devastating feeling.  I would get up sometime around 10 or 11a.m.  I would stay in my pajamas, and I would wander downstairs to take my medicine and slowly make my way to the couch.  On good days, I would put clothes on…and maybe even make it to the grocery store.  On bad days, the other 6 days of the week, I would not make it anywhere.  I started to believe that was my life.  That was where I was going to stay.  I live with 7 invisible diseases, and the last 3 were autoimmune related as well as fibromyalgia, which caused increasing amount of inflammation and pain.  I put on 25 extra pounds which looked like more.  You could see it in my face, belly, and thighs.

What does this have to do with you?

Are you feeling lost and unsure of your future wellness goals?

Do you feel like you could get things together if you only had the guidance?

Did you suddenly look at your weight and think…how did I get here???

Are you stuck in a rut doing the same things everyday, not seeing results, but you want to do more…be more…live more????

If you answered yes to any of the above, then this program is for you!!

I am sure you have tried many different things by now to improve your health, and I want you to know, it’s not your fault.  I was in the exact same place you are in.  I have helped coach hundreds of people who did not know the things that I am about to share with you during this program.  What you are about to learn in only 4 short weeks literally took me 18 years of research.  It’s hard to believe that you could be seeing results like I saw in less than 30 days, but it really and truly changes your perspective on wellness and what that really means!

This program is not like others because I am not trying to get you to buy anything else.  I am not selling you a magic potion, shakes, or anything of that nature.  I am merely re-training you to do what was inside of you all along.  You are guided through 4 weeks with only one task a day, and a new workbook each week that outlines the reasons behind the daily tasks and includes great resources.

What will you get?

  • Lifetime access to the 4 Weeks to Wellness course
  • 4 workbooks which guide you through the wellness journey
  • Food, Fitness, Self-care, Stress and Balance tips
  • Additional worksheets and Journal prompts
  • A resource section
  • A bonus opportunity

What happened for me when I implemented 4 Weeks to Wellness?

As I began to work through the 4 areas of wellness, my life started to change.  I was losing weight within the first few months without even exercising.  I constantly repeated my goals, and kept track of how my body was reacting.  I went from hardly being about to walk, move or have any strength at all, to being able to do things I never thought I was going to be able to do again!

VYW_4 weeksSigns of autoimmune are apparent in my puffy features…but not after!

Why listen to me?

I have reversed the pain from my fibromylagia and I became certified in Vinyasa Yoga after 200 hours of training…something I would not have been able to do prior to my plan.  I then went on to complete more hours in yoga for Pain and Arthritis as well as get certified in Sports Nutrition.  I know what we need to eat to get optimal results.  The plan is much more affordable than any monthly gym membership, and gives you everything need to do this at home.  This is so important if you are trying to change your life, but going to a gym right now is virtually impossible or a scary thought.  By the end of the 4 weeks, you will have learned enough to continue implementing the strategies at home, and possibly even be ready for some group exercise or even yoga like me!  You will have everything you need to do this at home.  I believe in you and am ready to support you if you are ready to say YES!

Here is the link in case you missed it:  4 Weeks to Wellness

Everything you need to start your transformation is available to you immediately.  No need to wait!



Motivational Monday…

Goals seem to be wildly popular over on my FB quote page.  So, today, I am talking about change.  I posted this quote “It’s not that some people have willpower and some don’t.  It’s that some people are ready to change and other are not.”  A guy named James Gordan said that.  I want you to think about it for a minute.  All the times people have “changed” what they were doing or eating only to fall back in a “rut”.  The truth is, they weren’t ready.  They really weren’t.  My biggest problem was food.  I have “fixed” that.  It is currently my lack of energy and pain.  Now, some things we can change, and others might be a bit out of our control; however, I decided to take this quote one step further by realizing I can have mini-goals.  These mini-goals allow me to focus on one thing at a time and make fixing the bigger picture seem less out-of-control.

I changed my losing weight goal to increments of 5.  Easy.  I like that much better.  I changed my sugar detox to a splurge only once in a while because this mess gets on my nerves.  Easy.  I split a creme brûlée with my girlfriend on Saturday and felt better.  I changed working out every single day, ha, ridiculous, to doing some sort of exercise daily.  Even light house cleaning counts on My Fitness Pal.  Whoa.  It cancelled the calories out.  I win.  Winning.  Winner winner chicken dinner.  Got carried away…anyway, these mini-goals are really helping.  Lastly, daily affirmations.  I am about to start my “mirror board” where I put all kinds of things on it to look at daily.  Result baby.  Results.

Change You



Stress release?

There is a renewed sense of going to the gym at my workplace.  It is going to make us feel better and get in shape.  It relieves stress.  And I have a great workout station that I get to listen to, so it really does make me work harder on the elliptical.  The problem is, there are people who don’t know how to read signs posted at the gym.  Like the one that says no talking on your cell phone on workout equipment.  I guess the lady next to me was talking to herself.  Then there is my favorite, the sign posted in the 30 minute circuit training area that says follow the directions or you might be asked to leave that area.  Ha.  Haven’t seen anyone escorted out of there yet.  My friend and I were waiting one day for these fabulous people who continued to use the same machine over and over and would not move on.  That must have been one great machine.  I didn’t see any signs posted that said instant muscle.  Who knows.  Then the next time we went, a girl walked right by us using the equipment (with the flashing green for go and then red for stop light above us clearly marking time) and jumped right on the machine I was about to use.  This time I did eyeball her and say “I guess I wasn’t about to use that.”  She acted like she didn’t realize and at least she apologized.

The next occasion we went to the circuit area, we were about to start our rounds when a guy comes in with an entire group of people and starts teaching a class back there.  What the what???  I didn’t even know they did that.  Awesome.  So, we go back again and the lady who likes to jump on the equipment I am about to use is there again.  Brilliant.  I eyeball another machine and make my way to it, when a man jumps on it and starts doing ab exercises.  Sigh.  I can take a hint, so my friend and I went to happy hour instead today.  Sometimes the universe is trying to tell you something.  Listen.  Mine is telling me to wait for spring, and get outdoors.

“No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.”  ~Hal Borland

Motivational Monday…

Tonight I’d like to tell you about someone who was inspiring.  At the age of 42, he was the oldest rookie the Cleveland Indians had, and he would continue to play for nearly 20 more years.  I’m talking about Satchel Paige.  Oh, maybe you don’t follow baseball.  Neither do I really, but I love stories like his.  For a while, he really didn’t know his exact birth year as his mother was getting older and she said she wrote it in the family Bible.  Ha, but he didn’t mind as he quoted Mark Twain and said “Age is a question of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”  It is never too late to start something new or become great at what you already know.  It just takes hard work.

As I left the gym tonight, I thought about how much procrastinating I have been doing, and realized how good it feels when I actually stick to my plan.  So I’m going to end with one of my favorite quotes and remind myself what really matters.

“Work like you don’t need the money. Love like you’ve never been hurt. Dance like nobody’s watching.”  ~Satchel Paige

NEAT…(Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis)

Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis.I started working out again.  Yay for me.  My mind was screaming ugh leading up to it for some reason.  You see, it is really hard to get back into the swing of things when you break a “habit”.  I have read numerous articles, blogs, etc. that say a habit is formed in 21-30 days.  I don’t know if “they” are right…whoever “they” are.  I know I am trying to enlist in my army of support.  I have people stashed everywhere.  A gym buddy.  A yoga buddy.  A clean-eating/juicer buddy.  Gluten-free buddies.  Ski buddies (I miss you).  Ways to get me outside or doing something.

Apparently, I can even lose weight while doing almost nothing…NEAT.  No, really, it is called Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis.  This is a really cool concept and you can read about it here.  Supposedly, NEAT burns an average of 330 calories in healthy individuals.  So my idea of asking buddies all around me to get me to exercise more can help me with things like “walk” meetings.  Ha.  How cool would that be.  Okay, I know we have a meeting, but let’s all walk back and forth down the hall and let everyone know our business while conducting this meeting.  Okay, maybe that won’t work for everything, but have you ever had a co-worker try to stop you to chat?  Say, walk with me.  Then go back and forth.  We have space at our building to do this, but not enough time usually.  We need to make time if it makes us healthy.

There are also reports that people with more friends at work are healthier and less stressed.  Stress causes us to eat more.  I can tell you one thing, I don’t have much time during the day.  I miss my lunch buddies and I do think that helped a lot, but then all our lunch times were moved around (I still have a lunch buddy thankfully).  I see less of my friends now.  I might have to try the walking meeting.  If I bust in your room, you now know why.  Consider yourself warned…and buddies that pop in from other places, I miss you too!

Last thought tonight, make your plans, enlist in help, and don’t be afraid to start again the next day when things don’t go as planned.

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”  ~Hippocrates

Don’t be like Eeyore…

Some 100 posts ago, I wrote about a book I read that slowly helped me to change the way I thought about things.  It was just a tiny book, but it had lots of positive sayings inside.  I called the post Acceptance, and spoke of ways to improve your life immediately.  So, back to today’s post.  I haven’t been out of the house in a few days, and I’m actually fine with that, but we go to the grocery store and I see a magazine that looks promising.  I never buy magazines and wait until I go to the salon (which is not often) and finally get my hair done before I read anything like a “beauty” magazine.  However, today I saw the cover of Women’s Health, and I thought, why not?  I need some “Sexy Abs & Butt!” and apparently I need to “Sizzle” in my skinny jeans.

Sooo, I start reading the letter from the editor right at the very front.  I absolutely love it when I find even more research that tells me what I have known all along.  Apparently, there is a book out called Six Weeks to Skinny Jeans and in it the author, Amy Cotta, tells us that the average person has about 60,000 thoughts a day (double that for people who can’t sleep without going over everything that happened that day…erm, not me of course), 80 percent which are negative.  Does this surprise me?  No, not really.  So three years ago, I took it upon myself to spread positivity to my friends and co-workers each day. I started a lunch bunch where we did not talk about work, but tried to talk about other things, and I miss all the folks who stopped by.  I still have a regular friend who attends, but my lunch is not at the same time anymore, and it is hard after two years to get used to that.

Anyway, I devised another plan, and started posting these quotes as my status on the book of face.  Many friends told me how wonderful they felt and that it was just what they needed.  They didn’t know that their words were just what I needed as well.  However, just like anything, you are always going to have one person be just awful.  This “friend” of mine posted something terrible after one of my particularly nice quotes and told me how horrible her life was at the moment.  Do you want to know what was horrible?  She lost her air conditioning and had to buy a new one.  Seriously.  Thanks for telling me to “shut up, I don’t want to hear this right now” and wallowing in your own ridiculous thoughts.  I cut that Eeyore loose.  Whew.

My advice to you, is that if you want to change what’s going on in your life, take a good hard look at the company you keep.  If you are surrounded by “Eeyores”, they are just going to bring you down.  So, thanks Women’s Health magazine for telling me to build spiritual muscle, be actively grateful, and pass the positivity along.  I am trying to do just that.

How funny is it that the perfect clip was out there?

“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be cumbered with your old nonsense.”  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Music Monday…

I’ll admit it…some days it is hard for me to get to the gym.  The thing is, I have made a commitment to myself that I don’t want to break.  Excuses are easy to make.  Dedication is harder.  That’s where my music saves me.  I discovered Pandora last year, and loved it.  What do you mean I can create music stations based on what I like and it’s free?  Cool.

So here’s what I made:

  • 80’s Dance Party Music (self-explanatory)
  • George Michael Radio, which means other songs show up that are similar like P.M. Dawn, U2, Madonna, etc.  Basically, it’s 80’s music again.
  • U2 Radio, ummm see above ha, but add the Goo Goo Dolls, Pearl Jam, and the Police for fun.
  • Heavy D Radio, and yes, that is for real, throw in Zhane (Hey Mr. D.J.)
  • The Temptations Radio, love me some oldies, throw in Etta James, The Drifters, etc.
  • Rusted Root, well, what can I say, reminds me of college music, and quite frankly I like them…a lot.
  • Bob Marley Radio, Booooooob is the man.  Seriously.  Love the sound of reggae.
  • Led Zeppelin, do I need to say more?  Sure, I will.  When CD’s first came out, yes that makes me older than some folks, anyway, I asked for the entire Led Zeppelin collection for Christmas.  That was all I wanted.  The Rolling Stones, the Animals, and Steve Miller also pop up on this “station”.
  • Metallica Radio, well this might surprise you.  I don’t know.  My little brother was learning how to play guitar when I was in high school, so these songs were heard often.  Guns N’ Roses, Godsmack, and even Rob Zombie popped up the other day (you never know what might play).
  • And to conclude, for now, I made a Lady Gaga station.  I mean, honestly, this one really helps me on the elliptical.  She makes rocking music and artists like Katy Perry, Kesha, Britney Spears, and Adele pop up on here.

For people who know me, none of this should come as a big surprise.  I love to be eclectic.  Opera, classical, blues, jazz, you name it, I’m sure I could find something that speaks to me.  I don’t expect everyone to like my taste in music; however, if you do have something you find motivating, feel free to let me know.  As a final thought, my college buddy and I are applying for a grant-based class this summer.  They only take a few applicants, so hopefully we both get in.  Especially her, since it was her idea…ha.  Anyway, if we get in, I will be writing about the most “Southern” place on Earth.  The music, culture, and history of the Mississippi Delta.  I might just have to create a new station in anticipation of this class.  I love new adventures, so here’s hoping we get to go.

“For me, singing sad songs often has a way of healing a situation. It gets the hurt out in the open into the light, out of the darkness.”  ~Reba McEntire (one awesome artist)


Welcome to Fantasy Island…

Another day has passed and I am continuing on my path.  I am following my new regimen as directed.  My personal trainer, let’s call him Mr. Roarke, tells me that the weight is just going to drop off of me and I am going to be a size 4 in no time*.  I love Mr. Roarke.  I keep looking around for Tattoo to jump out from behind the weights, but so far, I haven’t seen him.  The fantasy he has created for me sounds wonderful in my head.  The reality is that I did not do this to be a certain “size”.  I am doing this for my physical and mental wellness.  That being said, Mr. R sent me on a quest to find some special protein drink mix.  Note, I have updated the link to one I use now as it is all-natural with only naturally occurring sugars.  ~~Update!!~~ After I made my own program, listed a bit under the tab Vitalize You here, and stuck with it, I did end up losing the weight and dropping many sizes…can fit into my old size.  BUT it was my persistence that helped.

I went to the local health food store where I asked the lady working behind the counter where I could find this mix.  She had not heard of it, so she ventured off into a back room somewhere where some mysterious man was waiting.  Apparently he is the guru of all things healthy.  A moment later she reappeared with an emphatic no, they did not carry that brand.  So I went back over to that section and started looking at all the protein mixes.  A man materialized in the store, and I took a wild guess that this was the guru.  I asked him what he recommended I take instead and got a dissertation on all things protein.  I had no idea.  Really.  He asked me what this was for and I mentioned strengthening my joints through exercise.  He told me about a product I have not heard of called Wobenzym.  This product is supposed to provide wonderful benefits including eliminating joint and muscle pains.  I’m not sure if any of my readers have heard of this, but if you have, please let me know what you think.  I am willing to try it.  I have read the reviews, and they look promising.

The lady behind the counter asked me if I found what I was looking for, and I briefly told her about the new discovery.  She said, well maybe you were meant to come in here.  She read my mind.  Perhaps Mr.Roarke sent me on a quest in which I inadvertently learned something new…just like on the television show.  I guess I have to board the plane and find out if it’s true.

***UPDATE:  I actually am on all my own natural products.  I take Relief, and it is amazing.  It contains Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulfate, PLUS turmeric, which I love, yucca root, which is known to be anti-inflammatory and MSM which is a plant-based formula used to help ease chronic pain.  And it works!  ha:)

“And yet I think of Christopher Reeve who said he would pay two million dollars to be able to feel pain again. What a courageous man! So I have to think that pain is a blessing.”

~Ricardo Montalban