Summertime Health

So many of us start out summer with the best intentions of getting our summer fitness level up. We are anticipating warm summer days where we want to feel comfortable in our bathing suits or other fun summer clothes.

Even with the best intentions, we all sometimes fall off the wagon of health. Have you found yourself over indulging in summer time fun- too many summer snacks, extra drinking or sweets? If this rings true for you, accept where you have been, forgive yourself but decide TODAY what your health priorities are.

I recently was talking with an old client and a new client and had very similar conversations with them both. They were both feeling like they didn’t have the time for their health priorities and where talking about the fall or even wondering if there is a good time to start a new health routine. I assured them both there is never a wrong time to start but you have to be emotionally ready to create the space that is necessary to achieve your goals. Now that can seem overwhelming—- BUT trust me it doesn’t have to be.

Don’t create a bigger story in your head just to talk yourself out of YOUR overall goals. For example have you missed your regular workouts but don’t feel you have the time to commit to what YOUR OLD routine had been—- GET that story out of your head. Start small – 2 days a week to establish movement in your life would be a wonderful start!

Start talking about your health goals and priorities with your support group. It is amazing how we all need a little extra support and accountability to really keep us on track. It has been proven time and time again if you have support, whether it is through your friends, trainers or coaches you are more likely to stick with your health goals and priorities long-term.

Set sustainable milestones to help keep you on track. Determine your current habits that you want to adjust, for example:  have you been having to many sweet treat – instill  healthier versions of your existing treats or allow twice a week treats, have you been indulging in alcohol – instill no drinking during the week, have you been missing your workout- start out with 3 workouts that you schedule in your calendar per week. These are sustainable changes to start getting you on the right start. It is always the TIME TO PUT YOUR HEALTH FIRST! I challenge you all today to write out 2 sustainable changes you will start tomorrow. Stop making excuses and start tomorrow with a better version of yourself! I know you can do it and if you need extra help or personalized support to help you achieve your fitness and nutrition goals please reach out to me at 4pillarscoaching@gmail.com to receive your complimentary consultation.

In Good Health!!!

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Internal Up Hill Challenge…I Know You Can Conquer

Starting on a new plan or a new challenge is never easy. The first step is always the hardest but we mere humans already knew that. I have been thinking about this topic for a while now. We all know the hardest step to take is the first one—- getting our finances in order, sticking to a budget, starting a new exercise routine, giving up bad habits and replacing them with better healthier ones. But why is it SO hard???

I truly believe we don’t want to bury our heads in the sand and ignore our challenges but WHY is it so hard to START.

I believe the first step is just thinking about our current challenges or the context of our lives and what we desire for ourselves and our families. That first step of identifying areas for improvement is a wonderful first step, but it isn’t complete until you take the first step in changing the behavior. But KEEP IN MIND the fact that you have identified them, MEANS you want to become a BETTER VERSION OF YOURSELF and that is HUGE!!!!!

Recently my husband and I started a 30 day challenge where we each have to complete 30 minutes of heart pumping, sweat inducing exercise every day for 30 days. If we miss a day the next day we have to add that 30 minutes onto our current day’s goal. We both felt we needed to work on different areas of our bodies and coming up with a challenge helps to keep us accountable to ourselves and each other!

We all have the self-doubt voice in our heads particularly around sports or our fitness levels where we compare ourselves to others or talk negatively to ourselves  —-I am not strong enough to push through the strength training, I am not fast enough to win the race, I don’t have enough endurance to complete a (…fill in the blank…) Why do we feel it is ok to talk to ourselves this way, when we would never speak to our friends in this manner. If a friend came to me concerned about competing in a race I would encourage and support them…SO why don’t we give ourselves the same SELF LOVE that we give to others. I believe it is easy for the “self talk” to be allowed which discourages us because we feel it will SAVE us from OUR IDEA of potential failure, if we never begin we can’t fail. BUT GUESS WHATthe fact is when we decide to show up in any portion of our life for self-improvement it means we CAN ONLY GO UP THE HILL AND IMPROVE!!!

Any day where you change even one thing, you get out of bed and meditate for 10 minutes, you make a conscious decision not to purchase the “want” and only  the “need”, you go for a jog and end up walking YOU HAVE BECOME A BETTER VERSION OF YOURSELF!

Just by changing one thing you are making yourself a better person than you were before. We mere humans are meant to continue to learn, push, strive and improve ourselves. We all benefit from encouragement, support and accountability. If you are currently struggling with starting and would like more one on one guidance please reach out to me at 4pillarscoaching@gmail.com for your complimentary session where together we can come up with a plan so you can continue through this journey of health and fitness.

 

Life is full of challenges, make them lessons not obstacles !!!!

 

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Stress WE ALL have IT!

STRESS WE ALL have IT. How do you handle it?

Do you Stress Eat, healthy or unhealthy snacks or treats. Stress worry, do you then obsess about the stress and continue the loop of conversation over and over in your head? Do you Stress fight or yell, because you are just so damned stressed that everything puts you over the edge…. If you can relate to any or all of these you are not alone. I can admit that I have experienced all of the above at one time or another.

This year I am trying to turn over a new leaf or new chapter in my life. I am truly trying to create a space of balance in my life and my family’s life. Now trust me things get unbalanced throughout any day and stress sneaks in but what I have found is how we come back to the feeling of “balance” that makes a difference.

Here are some ideas of creating balance or calmness on the go:

  • Breathing Exercises
    • 4-7-8
      • Inhale for 4 counts, Hold your breath for 7 and Exhale your breath for 8 counts
    • Simply focus on your breath – inhale, exhale, repeat
  • Visualization
    • Visual a calm place that is near and dear to your hearth
      • The ocean waves rolling in and out
      • Seeing the Sunrise or Sunset
  • Body Scan
    • Provide a mental body scan on yourself
      • Your heart is beating, You can control your breath, You feel rooted to the ground through your feet or through your chair if you are seated.
  • Realize you are not alone
    • Humans are not meant to be alone and when we can humanize what we are going through (moments of sadness, stress or even happiness), it is helpful to realize other people are going through similar situations. You are not alone, even if in the moment you are physically alone. This feeling of others can help bring a sense of balance back to your day.

I also truly encourage everyone reading this to try Meditation. Start out slow even 5 minutes a day, where you crave out time for you and your mind. Trust me, you will see a difference and in moments of stress you can remember that feeling of “Calmness, Balance or Clarity” that you experienced during meditation and draw on that to calm your current situation.

Not every day is peaches and roses, trust me I know that first hand with 3 young children and a husband who travels for work. But WE decide how we react. Remember our “Body Innately wants to be Balanced“, how we achieve that balance in difficult and challenging moments is up to us. Stress is part of life for adults and even our children. If we can be role models to our families and friends, show and teach them how to handle stress and regain balance.  Perhaps they will start to implore the same techniques and we could all achieve a greater sense of balance in our lives.

I challenge everyone reading this to give the above mentioned techniques the next time you are feeling stressed or unbalanced. I would love to hear how they are working for you.  If you need any additional guidance or personalized help so you can regain balance  in your life, either in nutrition, stress management or fitness please feel free to contact me at 4pillarscoaching@gmail.com for your complimentary consultation.

In Good Health!!!!

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Peak or Slump

So many of us start out the New Year with many goals in mind but for many people the excitement of the New Years resolution starts to fade near the end of one month.

Did you start with a new exercise routine but have started to lose steam. Did you start a nutritional cleanse program but don’t know what is left to eat that will still entice your taste buds? Did you want to create a more mindful and peaceful space within your life but got sucked back into the daily hectic pace?

If you can relate to any of the above, I want to let you you are not alone and that this is a non-judgmental space. Trust me even those of us with the best plan and most thoughtful intention can still lose steam or lose sight of the overall goal and benefit to oneself in the hustle and bustle of life.

I truly believe we are all so much more successful in achieving our goals when we have a support system or a champion in our corner. I would love to help coach you towards your goals, while challenging and inspiring you to continue with your health and nutrition journey.

Please contact me at 4pillarscoaching@gmail.com to set up your complimentary session where we can discuss your current challenges and come up with a plan together to bring you the results you desire in 2018!

In Good Health!

Be Fit…Be Healthy…Be Mindful…Be Inspired

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Daily Habits

I know so many of us start out the New Year or a new month with the best intentions; either to start or increase an exercise regime or to eat healthier but then it fizzles out mid month… How do we start these healthy habits and make them stick?

Recently I have been reading many books and articles on habits good or bad and what makes them become a habit. So many times I think we as humans overcomplicate our own intentions…we create these elaborate plans or strategies.

  • I will meditate 3 times a week
  • I will eat vegetarian 2+ times a week for dinner
  • I will run 4 days a week

The list can go on and on…even though these items seem intentional I have found that the daily habit is easier to maintain for most people. Think of it as brushing your teeth, you don’t say on Monday, Wednesday and Friday are teeth brushing days, you simply brush your teeth multiple times every day. If you set an intention of exercising every day I believe it is easier to maintain than setting a 3 or 4 day a week workout plan. Now don’t get me wrong I am not saying it needs to be a major, kill yourself workout every day but if you do something small (sit-ups, pushups, jumping jacks and squats) every day you will form that healthy habit that will most likely lead to more strenuous work outs on other days. Then when you want to incorporate a bigger program; running, yoga, biking or strength training into your routine you already have the baseline of feeling good and knowing how the release of endorphins make you feel. Another best practice is to have a buddy or share your workouts with friends, knowing that you are accountable to other people make it easier to show up to your daily workout on those days that you are feeling less motivated. When you believe and sign up for daily exercise, set one day for your Rest Day, but make sure you get right back the next day to your routine. Everyone I talk to, admits it is always harder to start an exercise routine again when they have taken a lot of time off. I believe that is because it has fallen out of habit and you have forgotten the rush of endorphins you get after a workout. Remember again, if you do something small every day for your health you will not only see the benefits but your body will remember the feeling you receive after.

When you are starting a healthier diet start with small sustainable changes that can also become daily habits. If you typically skip breakfast start there, or if you eat out for lunch start with packing your lunch from home. When you make the meals you know exactly what is going into it and you can control the the fat, protein, fiber and salt content. I know it can feel overwhelming at first but mindful planning can go a long way. If you need help with mindful meal planning or establishing an exercise routine or need someone to check in with to help hold you accountable I am here to help. Please reach out for your complimentary consultation with me at 4pillarscoaching@gmail.com

REMEMBER AMAZING PEOPLE DO NOT 

JUST HAPPEN…

BE THE DIFFERENCE YOU WANT TO BE

 

In Good Health!!!

Be Fit…Be Healthy…Be Mindful…Be Inspired

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Feeling Sluggish In The AM?

Do you wake up and crave coffee right away…If so you are not alone. So many times these morning cravings are formed out of habit and are more a psychological trigger than a need. Many people FEEL they need coffee to wake up in the morning, to feel refreshed or charged to face the day.

Well today on the last day of 2017 I am challenging you to replace that habit with a new one. Now don’t get crazy on me and think I am telling you to eliminate all caffeine from your life, all I am simply saying is don’t let coffee or tea be your first drink of the day. Instead start with a refreshing glass of warm water with lemon, mint and ginger in it. Trust me this drink will create the ZING you are looking for first thing in the morning.

Not only is this drink refreshing, it is healthy for you and a great way to start your day off.

  • Lemon’s provide more Vitamin C than oranges and it helps to cleanse your body first thing in the morning.
  • Mint adds a little bit of sweetness to the water without any added sugars. It also helps settle your stomach and helps with digestion.
  • Ginger adds the zip to this drink. I finely chop 1″ of a fresh ginger root to add to my water, as a little goes a long way with this root. Ginger also helps to settle stomachs and aids in digestion.

 

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So today on the last day of 2017 let’s start our day out by replenishing water we lost overnight while we slept and add in the extra benefits of fresh vitamins and minerals. Trust me if you make this small sustainable change for 7 days,  I know you will feel a difference in the morning. Tomorrow is a new day and a new year, this can be the start of a new morning routine that will battle off the sluggish morning feeling and provide the zip you need. I would love to hear how you feel once you make this small sustainable change, please reach out here or at 4pillarscoaching@gmail.com, In Good Health!!!

 

If you are looking for more personalized coaching around your fitness or health goals please contact me at 4pillarscoaching@gmail.com for your complimentary coaching session.

 

Be Fit…Be Healthy…Be Mindful…Be Inspired

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Health or Illness

So many of us pray for health or cheers to good health but how many of us decide to take a “Truly Active Role” in achieving and maintaining our health???

Recently I was reading many different theories and methodologies of nutrition and fitness and what defines optimum health. One quote that really stood out to me was…

” If you don’t take the time for exercise now, you will have to find the time for illness later.”

This really hit home for me. We all live full and at times, or most times hectic lives, and let’s be honest, exercise is an easy thing to skip and to make excuses for skipping it. We can list off many other obligations that need to be taken care of before we put ourselves and our exercise routine first. Let’s stop that today!!! Re-read the above quote….basically it says ——- Exercise Now or Find the Time Later for ILLNESS….

I don’t know about you but I definitely want to be active in my golden years and don’t want to be constrained by illness or mobility issues.

A couple months back a group of friends of mine set out an exercise challenge. It was a 30 day challenge where you had to be active for 30 minutes every day – this could be a brisk walk, yoga, strength training, running…etc– whatever you like to do that would get your blood pumping and your heart rate up for at least 30 minutes. If you didn’t complete your 30 minutes that day you had to put $1 in the pot – at the end of the 30 days we all went out to dinner. This type of community building, accountability model helps to keep you on track and motivated. Now like anyone, there were days that I missed because life simply took priority that day, but I will say knowing that we were all in this together kept it at the top of my list.

Here are some simple routines you can start tomorrow so you are choosing to EXERCISE NOW TO AVOID ILLNESS LATER!!!

Quick Morning Routine

  • 1 min jumping jacks
  • 20 squats
  • 12 pushups
  • 20 chair dips
  • 2 min of bicycle sit ups

Repeat this set 4 times once a day…

Rise and Shine Yoga Salutations

  • Mountain Pose
  • Forward Fold
  • Half-way Rise
  • Step back to Warrior I right leg forward
  • Turn to Warrior II
  • Step Back to Forward Fold
  • Jump or Step Back to Plank
  • Down to Chaturanga
  • Push up to Up Dog
  • Finish in Down Dog
  • Repeat above but step back to Warrior I with your Left Leg forward

Hold each position for 30 seconds to 1 min, repeat this sequence 4 times

Here are 2 different quick exercise routines you can start your day with or incorporate into your current exercise regime to gain additional flexibility and muscle strength.

I challenge all of you out there to begin a 30 day exercise challenge with your friends and family. Let’s face it we could all use a little extra motivation, especially this time of the year where we get so consumed with the business of the holidays. Let’s give ourselves an early holiday present of “TAKING AN ACTIVE ROLE IN ACHIEVING AND MAINTAINING OUR HEALTH!!!”

 

If you would like a more personalized exercise regime please contact me at 4pillarcoaching@gmail.com for a complimentary session where we can discuss your health and fitness goals. In Good Health!!!

Be Fit…Be Healthy…Be Mindful…Be Inspired 

 

 

 

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Big or Small

Recently I have started meditating again in the morning and I have to be honest I forgot how much I enjoy it. Now I know for many people the thought or the act of mediating can be intimidating, restless or down right hokey.  First off I am here to tell you, there is no WRONG way to MEDITATE, and there is NEVER a BAD TIME to MEDITATE.  If you have 5 minutes or 30 minutes go for it.

Recently I completed a guided meditation that really hit home for me, the ending prompt was :

Life is as big or as small as we choose to make it. It all depends on our understanding and perceptions of the limitless nature of our mind“.— WOW! Reread that, take a minute to really absorb it.

I guess I have always thought I was living a big life but when I saw this prompt it made me pause and really think about the power of our mind and the impact we can create for ourselves vs. staying on the hamster wheel of life. I for one want a big life that is full of many wonderful adventures, happiness, health…the list goes on an on. But what really hit home for me with this prompt was, I know I have been in those spaces where I have been complacent or maybe even too comfortable with “life”. Don’t get me wrong I am not saying we all need to be going  110% all of the time but what does a big life mean to you, to me, to our family and friends – everyone’s answer will be different as it should be. However, so many times we find ourselves going through the motions to get by and to keep the “wheels on the bus intact” but is that embracing this idea of a Limitless Mind?

Take a minute right now, what comes to mind when you think of this notion of the limitless nature of your mind. What are your biggest wishes for a Life that is Big, what are the steps that you can start taking to make these changes today for that Big Life you so desire?

My husband and I have talked a lot about this. We have both over the years realized that huge changes are usually not sustainable, however if you start to create small positive changes every day for example meditating for 5 minutes every morning, going for a 20 min walk or run, that when you do this other acts of positive change won’t be as hard. Your Limitless Mind will already be trained to accept and thrive under positive habits and it will embrace these challenges you put forth.

I challenge you all right now to reread that above prompt and think to yourself do you want a Big or Small Life and what doest that really mean to you….

 

If you would like more personalized help with identifying positive habits around health, wellness and fitness please contact me for a complimentary session at 4pillarscoaching@gmail.com.

 

In Good Health!

 

Be Fit…Be Healthy…Be Mindful…Be Inspired

 

 

 

 

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Tasty and Quick Lunch

I wanted to share this quick and tasty lunch with you all. It is packed full of Iron, which is so important for all of us but especially my women readers, high in Protein, B-Complex, high in Fiber, and for the grand finale it contains a rich source of Glycine Betaine which is wonderful for all my readers Cardiovascular Health!!! Essentially what this phytochemical compound does, is it helps lower the homocysteine levels within the blood, when we have high levels of this toxic metabolite it is harmful to our blood vessels which can lead to cardiovascular diseases. So based upon this info I know you are all ready to hear what my tasty and quick-lunch was….

Here it is,  I call it the “Protein Packed Spinach Lentil Beet Salad”. I know some of you are thinking Beets, they aren’t my favorite or Beets they take a while to roast and prepare. As a mom of 3 kids 9 and under I have a solution for you… If Beets aren’t your favorite please give them another try with this salad – I think you will be surprised and if you think you don’t have time to roast them I get that too. I buy my beets already roasted and peeled at Trader Joe’s or Safeway. Now I know my parents who are both amazing Home Chefs are cringing right now, but honestly I think they taste as good and guess what there is no hassle for me to get my fill of Glycine Betaine in my diet. So for me it is a Win-Win.

It takes minutes to  make this quick and easy salad. One layer of fresh spinach leaves, 1/4-1/2 Cup cold lentils, 3 beets chopped, handful of red grapes sliced, a sprinkle of goat cheese (if you like that sort of thing and don’t have an intolerance to it). I stick with my favorite home dressing where I lightly drizzle olive oil over the salad, squeeze 1/2 fresh lemon to give it a pop of citrus and lightly drizzle balsamic glaze to finish it off. Trust me you will love this salad if you give it a try!!!

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I hope you enjoy this salad as much as I do for so many reasons: it is quick and convenient, packed full of essential vitamins and minerals and most of all extremely satisfying!!! If you would like more personalized help with your nutrition or fitness please reach out to me for your complimentary session at 4pillarscoaching@gmail.com.

In Good Health!

Be Fit…Be Healthy…Be Mindful…Be Inspired

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Too HOT to cook….But I am starving!!!

I know with the kids back in school we all think it should be time for Fall eating. Where we get out our favorite stews, chili or pumpkin recipes (unless of course you are my friend Stacy who despises anything in the pumpkin region – still love you girl even though I think that is un-American), we bust out the snuggly blankets and watch football.

Well, here in the lovely Bay Area we are experiencing a heat wave and it is reaching 105 up to 113 degrees. I know my family in the Mid-West and East Coast are calling me soft right now since we will probably only have to endure this for 4 days, but to all my Cali peeps out there it is Hotter Than You Know What!!!

I understand the pain of first hand trying to come up with something delicious that won’t heat you or your house up. Here is one of my favorite go to lunches that can be made the night before so you can take to work, or can be made quickly when you have a minute in your day.

The base is baby spinach, topped with a combo of shredded kale, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage (Safeway has a great organic brand that comes packaged with all of these shredded together). I then cube organic tofu, add a handful of dried cranberries and top it all off with some sliced grapes. I lightly drizzle olive oil and a balsamic glaze, and to really give it the POP of flavor I am looking for I top it with fresh lemon juice from half a lemon. Is you mouth-watering yet….Trust me it is SO GOOD and REFRESHING on these miserably hot days or really any day!

Tofu Grape Salad

Trust me after you eat this you will be so happy that you spent the 5 minutes it took to prepare it vs. grabbing the chips and salsa or cheese and crackers as a quick non cooking meal/snack. These meal is packed full of essential vitamins and minerals, honestly too many to mention where I don’t bore you!

If you are looking for more personalized help with meal planning, strategies for meal prepping or just overall help with your nutrition and health please let me know. Feel free to reach me at 4pillarscoaching@gmail.com to schedule your complimentary 30 minute coaching session.

In Good Health!

Dana

Be Fit…Be Healthy…Be Mindful…Be Inspired

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