Are you at a point in your life when it seems like you will never get back in shape? You weigh too much, you’re too old, you’re too injured, you’re too whatever.
You may have adopted the attitude of, “Why even try?”
I mean you are so far gone, what’s the use?
I will tell you what the use is. It’s time to suck it up, get over yourself, and get to work! Feeling sorry for yourself only makes it worse. I know because I’ve been there myself.
Take a look at people who made incredible changes in their lives. The ones who have completely transformed themselves.
Whether it is someone on The Biggest Loser or the person at work who you barely recognize now. They have the same thing in common.
At one point in their lives they decided they were absolutely fed up and disgusted with how their bodies looked, how they felt, how depressed they were, etc… and did something about it other than worry.
Sometimes you have to hit rock bottom to climb back up. I had a client once who had her wake up call when she realized she was ordering two drinks at the drive thru so the people wouldn’t think all that food she had ordered was just for her.
I had another client who was one year away from turning the age his dad was when he died of a heart attack. Like his dad, he was 50 pounds overweight, stressed out, and in terrible health. He refused to leave his own kids to grow up like a father like he did.
My own turning point came when I was 50 pounds overweight, football career was over, and my arm was going to be in a cast for 6 months. It was time to either give into the depression and do nothing. Or change the way I lived and get myself right.
When are you going to get fed up?
When are you going to say “No more!”
It doesn’t have to be like that though. You can start today and not go through the painful experiences.
Don’t wait until after the heart attack. Don’t wait until your spouse leaves you. Don’t wait for something terrible to happen.
You won’t fix it over night, you may not even fix it in a year. But you have to keep going. Do you worry about your weight or your body every day, but do nothing about it?
That makes it worse! It eats you alive. Remember this simple phrase.
Action. Alleviates. Anxiety.
You will feel so much better if you just do something about the problem!
Start with a short walk, 5 pushups, 1 healthy meal. Just start. And once you start, refuse to ever go back. Never again will you be that person. The new you starts now.
No matter how small, take some action today to get better.
Does that look familiar? It should because most of us look like that at work. What do we do about it?
One of my clients, Lori, sent me a video of fancy move called the Thoracic Bridge. It’s a great way to correct imbalances and tight muscles. You can check out the video here Thoracic Bridge Video
It got me thinking of a few other ways to help undo all the desk job posture that is so common.
1. Sound the alarm
Set an alarm so that you have a reminder to stand up at a minimum once an hour. Preferably every 15 minutes if possible. Or you could always rock the stand up desk.
2. Squeeze the Charmin
A side effect of too much sitting is your glut muscles going to waste. While you are standing up any way when the alarm goes off, why not add a little something to it? Put your feet shoulder width apart, feet pointed out at 45 degree angles, and pinch your butt cheeks together. Sounds weird (because it is), but it will really help you.
3. Pull it apart
You need a band for this one. Hold a band directly out in front of you, arms straight, wrists straight, knuckles up, and then extend your arms all the way out like you are demonstrating your awesome wing span. Make sure to pinch your shoulder blades together in the back. This one will you will feel a difference in by doing them for just a few days.
4. Tight hips don’t lie
Sitting too much causes your hip flexors to tighten up. If you have trouble getting into a deep squat, the culprit can be tight hips. Try the 90/90 hip flexor stretch. Go into a kneeling position, with your right knee up and your left knee on the ground. Keeping your back straight, push your hips forward, and think about sinking your hips into the ground. Hold that for 15-20 seconds and then do the same on the other side.
Happy Iron Bowl Eve to you! This game is always a big deal in Alabama, but there year it is even bigger. The #1 team in the nation versus the #4 team in the nation, championships on the line.
People will be no longer speaking to several friends and family members after this. If you are unfamiliar with this rivalry, I’m not exaggerating.
The game is so nerve racking for some people they can hardly stand it. Why not put all the pent up aggression, nervous energy, and anger towards something else?
Introducing the Official Iron Bowl Exercise Game! Clay Travis is a well known sports write who has a CBS football drinking game. I can’t really sponsor that, so I’m totally stealing his idea and just using exercise instead.
Every time something from the following list happens, you will have an exercise to go with it. Since these games last 3.5 hours you could accumulate a serious workout here.
1. Every time the announcers mention “divided houses” (Auburn and Alabama fans who are married) do 5 pushups.
2. Every time they mention AJ McCarron’s girlfriend Katherine Webb do 5 pushups. If they also mention she is an Auburn grad, add 5 more on to that.
3. Every time Verne Lundquist says “Oh. My.” do 15 jumping jacks. This alone could kill you.
4. Every time an old coach for either team is talked about (The Bear, Chizik, etc…) do 20 squats.
5. Every time Aubie is shown do 5 pushups. Sorry, this will cost you probably 80 pushups.
6. Any time there is a turnover (by either team), do 10 burpees.
7. When Nick Saban is interviewed, do 5 squats every time he shrugs his shoulders.
8. Any time Gus Malzhan’s high school coaching career is mentioned, do 30 mountain climbers.
9. Any time a fan is shown looking dejected/with his or her hands on their head, do 20 pushups.
10. Every time they reference Tre Mason’s dad being in De La Soul, hold a plank for 30 seconds.
11. If your team is losing at half time, go for a long soul searching walk. Regroup.
12. If they mention an infamous interview with Gus Malzhan’s wife, do 20 sprints in your yard if you are a Bama fan. If you are an Auburn fan, turn your TV off.
13. Every mention of Saban going to Texas will get you Auburn fans 5 sprints. Bama fans can angrily tweet at whichever announcer keeps mentioning it.
13. Any time Gary Danielson arrogantly talks about a bad decision by the quarterback on your team, do 10 pushups.
14. Every time Verne seems like he is having way too much fun pronouncing names like CJ Uzomah or Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, do 5 burpees.
15. If your team wins, sprint around the block as fast as you can. If your team loses, angrily chase the winning fans in your neighborhood.
Best of luck to your team today! Either way, it’s just a game being played by giant teenagers. Enjoy it for what it is and have fun.
If you are on Facebook, you have probably noticed that a lot of people are talking about the things they are thankful for. I love it! Too often Facebook is a place where people go to do two things.
Brag or complain.
Especially the dreaded humble brag. “My Ferrari hasn’t been washed since I got back from skiing with Lady Gaga in Vail. LOL!”
This all sounds nice, but what does being grateful have to do with your health? As it turns out, it has a lot to do with your health.
Studies have shown that people who show an appreciation for the things they are grateful in life experience the following benefits:
-less aches and pains
-exercised more often
Another great thing about having an attitude of gratitude is the effect is has on your brain. When you are grateful it effects the part of that releases dopamine. It feels good to release dopamine, so this helps you continue to have that positive attitude so you can experience that feeling again.
Another benefit is that your brain is not a multitasker. When you are focused on the positive things in your life, you won’t be focused on the bad things in your life.
All of you doing the Facebook gratitude thing, keep it up! Or you can keep a gratitude journal if you are a more private type. Write a letter to someone who made a difference in your life.
I recently wrote a letter (by hand!) to a coach I had in high school who helped me. It really did feel good to picture hime reading the how he positively effected my life. It was 20 years ago, but I still benefit from the things he taught me.
Think of ways you can be more grateful and you will feel better. It’s science.
My clients probably don’t appreciate my love of the humble pushup, but there is a reason I love this exercise. Most people know it as an upper body exercise (chest, shoulders, and triceps), but it also works the lower back, abs, back legs, and butt.
Whether you are doing pushups on your toes, your knees, an incline, or a wall these tips can help you get more out of your pushups.
1. Don’t let your elbows flare out
It all starts with proper hand placement. Your hands should be directly underneath your shoulders at the top of the pushup. As you lower yourself down, keep your elbows in close to your body. Think about keeping your elbows lined up with the middle finger on your hand. When the elbows flare out, you place more stress on the shoulders.
2. Push through your pits
Focus on pushing with your armpits. This sounds weird, but will help you better recruit the muscles in your chest and triceps, gets the lats (the muscles on the side of your back) involved, and helps to protect your shoulders.
3. Never let your butt go over your head
This is just good life advice in general, so there’s that. It will also help you avoid a common problem of “piking” your hips up. Keep your butt muscles tight, your chin off your chest, and lower yourself down chest first. This will give you a better range of motion and a more effective pushup.
Did you know that pumpkin is very high in alpha- and beta-carotene? Taking in these two carotenes has been shown to increase your life span. And what better way to eat pumpkin, than in pie form?
This recipe from Healthy Living How To is a great one to try.
Pumpkin Pie with Nut Crust
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Ingredients1 cup Almond Flour/Meal
½ cup Bob’s Red Mill Hazelnut Meal/Flour
¼ cup Extra Light Olive Oil or Coconut Oil
Pinch of Himalayan Sea Salt
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Ingredients15 oz. Can Farmer’s Market Organic Pumpkin
13. 5 oz. Can Native Forest Organic Coconut Milk
¾ tsp. Ground Cinnamon
½ tsp. Ground Nutmeg
¼ tsp. Ground Ginger
¼ tsp. Ground Cloves
½ tsp. Himalayan Sea Salt
1/8 tsp. Stevia Extract Powder
2 Large Organic Eggs
1 Nut Crust
What’s your favorite way to prepare pumpkin? I would love to hear it.
Have you ever heard the quote, “The best revenge is a life well lived.”?
It really makes sense to me, but I see too many people going the complete opposite direction. I see more and more people who get hurt and then take it out on themselves.
It could be a spouse, family member, an employer, or any number of people that hurts them and it leads to self defeating behaviors and an overall negative attitude about life. They take solace in food, alcohol, solitude, anger, and many other destructive things.
They let themselves go completely and their health suffers tremendously.
Is that you? If you have gained more weight than you ever thought you would, what happened? Look back.
Do you remember a turning point? Chances are it leads back to some point where you were hurt.
Find that hurt and use it as fuel for success, rather than an anchor to hold you back.
Don’t let that person continue to win!
The best way to get back at the person that hurt you is to forget them. You’re worth the effort, so work on you and forget that hurt.
Man my toes are killing me! Do you get many blogs that start like that?
Every Sunday I do a circuit style workout with my wife and son. Great family time and it is a quick and effective workout.
We did 30 seconds on 30 seconds rest for 4 round of:
-Kettlebell goblet squats
-Kettlebell single leg deadlift (right leg)
-Kettlebell single leg deadlift (left leg)
In 28 minutes you get a full workout in. But back to my toes…
Why are they sore from all of that? Because I kicked off my Sunday shoes!
When was the last time you kicked off your shoes and ran barefoot as fast as you could? It really is an amazing thing that will give you a flashback to your childhood. Plus running in bare feet feels much better on my knees and strengthens your feet and toes (the reason for the sore toes).
When my son was about years old, he looked over at me and said, “Hey daddy let’s take our shoes off and go run in the grass!”
I can’t turn that offer down. And neither should you.
You don’t have to run fast and you don’t have to run far, but I encourage you to give it a try. It will be worth it.
Just be prepared to have grocery feet afterwards.
I’ve recently taken on some things in my life that have really cut down on my available workout hours. I’m very lucky that I am able to drop off and pick my son up at school. Family time is not something, I’m willing to compromise on. Getting up earlier is not going to happen either, 4am come early enough.
So what am I going to do? Go back to being fat? No thank you. Although I have to make a confession. I have daydreams of letting myself completely go. Eating like Bill Murray in Groundhog Day if you have ever seen that movie. It’s a pretty sweet daydream.
But it ain’t happening. Never again is my motto.
Do you have a schedule like that? A schedule where you have 5 minutes here, 10 minutes there. That’s not enough time to workout!
It isn’t enough time if you are trying to run a marathon, but if you are trying to lose fat and get in shape you can make it happen.
Here a “When You Can” workout I did the other day:
1. Got home from teaching my first class:
20 seconds of work, 10 seconds of rest for 8 round. Alternating between pushups and kettlebell swings every round. Took about 4 minutes.
2. Throughout the day:
Randomly run up and down the stairs. Also helps break the monotony of working.
Dropping down into a plank for 30 seconds here and there.
3. Just before I went to pick up my son:
5 minutes of sprints in the yard
4. Had 10 minutes:
20 seconds on, 10 seconds rest for 8 rounds for numbers 1 and 2 below.
1. Weighted hip thrusts
2. Alternated between overhead presses and squat/upright row.
5. That night while grilling fish:
15 minutes of Goblet squats, barefoot sprints with the little man, and checking Facebook (keeping it real).
All of that adds up. Look through your day, you have little pockets of time where you can do something! This goes for anybody. Even if you workout every day, you still need to become more active overall.
Audit you day and find out where you are wasting time. Eliminate the waste and fit in some physical activity.