I thought I would give you an update about my current health practices:
Two times a week acupuncture I am trying acupuncture to help with circulation and bruising in my left leg. Back in the 90’s, I had a DVT (deep vein thromboses). I am not currently taking any blood thinning medication or any other treatments or therapy. An update is coming after about 2 months.
12,000 steps per day and strength training 5 days per week (30 mins each). Two days a week in nature (hike, swim or workout).
15 mins a day in viparita karani pose or legs on wall
Sleep for at least 7 hours a day
Bedtime yoga routine every night
Meal plan with 5 servings of vegetables and fruit a day
Track food, water, vitamin, sleep, steps, and exercise daily
Do one thing that I consider self care. I created a list of things that I can do that I consider self care or things that I can do to relax
Decrease the amount of eating out
I want to use this blog to provide information about different wellness practices. For example, trying acupuncture. It wasn’t an interest until I researched the benefits. Sharing my experiences will give you a chance to try what sounds interesting and what is not your cup of tea.
What are the health practices you are digging?
I am so blessed to live in the San Francisco Bay Area because of the weather. We get super weather 95% of the year. This allows me to create a workout schedule that I can usually stick to most of the year. But there are those to can’t possibly swim in a lake in the winter or hike in a forest in the dead of winter. So today I would encourage you to get out there before the summer weather turns chilly.
This is what I did the last couple of weeks.
CAMPING TRIP! Oh yeah, we had a family reunion camping trip in Calaveras Big Trees State Park in the Sierra Mountains of California. It was three days of family, food and beautiful weather. Here a picture of my site outside the trailer (my dad gave me his trailer for the trip). Seeing this beauty, TOTALLY relaxed me!
This is the sunset in the forest that looks like the trees are on fire.
And the lake I swam in…
I can not tell you how relaxing this was for me! I came back to the Bay Area positive, recharged and my spirit was filled.
Yesterday I took a hike in a local park and found this cool monument in a local park (Joaquin Miller Park in Oakland). I just stumbled upon it. COOL!
And this is the view!
Soak up this beautiful summer and walk on the wild side! What have you been doing this summer to improve your wellness both physically and emotionally?
HOW DOES YOUR VACATION AFFECT YOUR WELLNESS?
With summer upon us, what are your travel plans? Overseas? Or a local staycation? Research shows that we should take advantage of our vacation time for a happier life. Particularly overseas travel. And travel in sunny places. Although I don’t believe they didn’t account for the beauty of the snow covered mountains and people who love winter sports. I believe taking our wellness seriously, both mind and body is important. So with that in mind, here are my tips:
I can’t afford it. This is an excuse we give ourselves about almost everything that is good for us. You don’t have to travel far for a wonderful vacation, just the desire. Find what you love and do it. Do you love music? Find your favorite group or artist and visit a concert away from your home. Maybe just a 3 or 4 hour drive from your home. Rent a room on airbnb and meet some new people.
Find a location that you can drive to
Stay in a room in an airbnb instead of an entire home
Go during off seasons when things are cheaper
Treat yourself to one or two meals out in the new city, instead of every meal.
Explore your surroundings! Go to historical places, the library, free outdoor concerts or rodeos. Parks and the beach are FREE!
Use some of the time to mediate or read a book. Quiet time away from the hustle and bustle.
I am going to continue to speak on travel and wellness for the next couple of weeks. What are are your tips? How does travel improve your wellness?
I hope this encourages you to begin your adventures now. Be good to yourself!
How do you set the reset button when you don’t feel as motivated to stay on track? Life can hand you lemons sometimes. Your schedule can change or you go on a vacation. Any little thing can set us off in the wrong direction. It’s ok. Every day is an opportunity to hop right back on that train.
So, where do you start?
SCHEDULE! Sit down and schedule your meals, workouts and other wellness activities (walks on the beach or in the forest, meditation, or prayer). Pick one day a week to set yourself up for success by planning.
Always have a backup plan. I keep a homemade frozen dinner and soup handy for a quick meal.
If you can’t find time for the gym, watch a youtube video. There are several videos that are only 5 - 10 minutes. Add steps to your daily routine. Park farther from your destination, set your timer to get up from your desk every 60 minutes, or take the stairs.
Keep healthy snacks available. In your bag. In your car. In your desk.
Get your coworkers and family on board. I told my coworkers not to let me drink soda or eat junk while at work. My favorite snacking time is at work. All I had to do is tell one person and I didn’t want to get “caught” so no need to tell the entire staff.
Use a tracker to track food, water and exercise. Like this one (https://www.bodyajenda.com/shop/tracker).
Please forgive yourself. No negative talk or thoughts.
Figure out a reward. I like to give myself something off my amazon wish list or new CUTE workout gear.
Take a hike. Literally. Get out in nature and take some deep breathes.
Journal. Write down your feelings, whatever they may be. Don’t forget to write down at least one thing you are EXTREMELY grateful for.
We all fall off the wagon. But it is our choice if we get back on or not. Be good to yourself and restart right now.
When eating out in restaurants, it can seem overwhelming. Nobody wants to eat a boring salad or plain fish when everyone else is eating clams and pasta in a butter sauce. I have a few tips on how to maintain your clean eating habits while dining.
Farm to table is really popular right now. That is great news for you. That means more natural foods. This is your best option when it comes to dining. The portions are usually more in line with the way we should be eating. This the BEST place for you to eat. Taste food from these places, and you will never eat at McDonalds again!
You can eat anywhere you want! Yes, that’s right. Anywhere. I can even eat at Red Robin or Olive Garden. How to I do it? Eat smaller portions. Don’t be scared to leave some food on your plate (or take it home for the next day).
Drink a whole glass of water before digging into bread, salad, or soup.
Eat slowly, enjoy every bite like it was your last. I usually stop and drink in between bites.
Load up on soups, salads or healthier appetizers, not fried appetizers. Thank goodness there are usually many appetizers to choose from.
Eat vegetarian. I love getting vegetarian pizza.
One of my favorite tricks is to eat at happy hour. The portions are smaller. I like to hit up restaurants that make the food from scratch so every bite is a party in my mouth.
Limit the amount of times you eat out. Go once a month and eat great quality ingredients instead of many times to eat cheaper and lower quality food.
I hope these tips help you enjoy the social aspects of dining out. With all the great restaurants these days, why not enjoy them and be happy! Taking care of your body and health doesn’t mean you can’t have this and you can’t have that. It means better choices. Bon appetite!
When learning anything new, I like learning about the person who is presenting the information. A look behind the scenes as it were. So here is your glimpse into my life. I am in my forties, a 1970’s baby. I am 5’7 ½. My lowest adult weight was 125 lbs after the birth of my 9lb 5oz son. My heaviest weight was somewhere in the low 200s. I was very active as a kid and young adult. But later in life, I had jobs that I sat at a computer most of the day. That’s when the pounds came on. I have always prefered junk food and snacks over vegetables and quinoa. So the weight caught up with me as I sat more than moved.
Now I have a job that allows NO sitting, I am a server. I climb stairs and a busy shift could be about 19,000 steps. But we are not always that busy. I also have a gym membership to swim, hit weight machines and take classes. However, I still like exercising in a natural way. Walking to the store, swimming in a lake, skiing down a mountain. I wish I had the time to do that, but like most people I don’t have hours to spend on natural exercise.
My work schedule changes every week. I have set up a workout schedule that works for me. That means before I do anything else, I workout. Normally that is even before breakfast because once I get distracted, it’s hard to get back on track.
Here is what habits work for me:
Exercise first thing in the am.
Put my workout clothes out on the bed at night and get into them as soon as I wake up
Always have water handy
Plan meals AND SNACKS
Always carry some snack foods with you. I like almonds and trail mix over a protein or meal replacement bar.
In the summers, I love to start the morning with a shake. (Fresh spinach, greek yogurt, lemon juice, frozen berries, coconut water and apple or pear)
Always end the day with reflection on what I am grateful for
Write what worked for me and what didn’t (new recipe, workout for the day) so I can evaluate and adjust to the weather, seasonal fruits and veggies, events,etc.
Always forgive yourself if you don’t eat perfectly or don’t workout. Start anew immediately! The very next meal. Add some steps in if you can’t exercise.
Lean on your community to support your efforts.
Here is a normal day.
Today’s workout (day off)
What I ate today (day off):
Noon - Whole foods prepared foods: ½ bbq chicken breast, ⅛ cup of mashed potatoes, ¼ cup mac & cheese, 1 cup of steamed broccoli, one dinner roll with butter (the treat!)
4pm - air popped popcorn and cantaloupe with coke zero (with lemon juice)
7pm - 2 cups spaghetti with turkey sausage and ground turkey, 1 cup salad with 1 tbsp newman’s light salad dressings
9pm - 1 each skinny cow
As you can see, a meal is missing. The way my schedule is, for most of the week I go in later in the afternoon or early evening. I eat when I get off work at 1am - 3am at night. Thus it ends up being 3 meals. Again, adjust your eating habits to when you can sit down and enjoy every single bite!
I hope this gives you an idea of what I do to keep my mind and body on track to stay healthy. As you see, I am not perfect. Be well and have a good week!
I recently got a nasty flu that had me calling in sick at work (it is extremely rare for me to EVER call in sick). If you are anything like me, getting back into your regular routine of working out and eating better is more difficult after indulging in some feel good foods. Here are my tips to getting back in the swing of things.
Talk a walk. Walking gets your blood flowing again. You begin to feel better by just getting out of the house. If you do it during the day, the sun will warm your skin and awaken your senses.
Do some soft yoga. By soft I mean more stretching than pushing your body. I would recommend this video by Yoga by Adriene: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xLS9uQQQyB0.
Drink lots of water and hot tea.
MEAL PLAN! Starting with a hot soup of whatever is left in your fridge. Chicken, pasta, and veggies are a great soup and healthy. Or use to google to use whatever ingredients you have in your fridge or freezer.
I take one multivitamin per day. I don’t over medicate myself with airborne, emergency vitamin C, and other vitamin supplements. It’s better to find extra vitamins in natural foods. Such as oranges and grapefruits or carrots and spinach.
Try a new exercise or class. Now is the time to get excited about doing something new not return to the same ole, same ole plan.
BE NICE to yourself. Positive vibes only when talking to yourself.
Once you find yourself feeling better, increase your workouts to 10 mins and slowly add minutes each day. Within a week of feeling better, you should go back to your normal workout schedule.
It is HARD to come back to my normal routine of working and life after a couple of days on the couch. Just do ONE thing, then another thing. Before you know it, your body will be ready for action!
My full time job is indoors without any sunlight. Not to mention that I live in the San Francisco Bay Area. And for a good portion of my life, I was overweight. According to the Harvard (https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/vitamin-d/), these factors increase my risk of vitamin D deficiency.
But what does Vitamin D do for your body?
* Vitamin D works with both calcium and phosphorus to help your bone grow strong as well as fight off disease and deadly cancer cells.
* It is believed that Vitamin D also assists with strengthening muscles.
* Prevent heart disease
* Studies show that the vitamin protects the body from type 1 diabetes and the flu
What can you do?
* Regular medical checkups with your doctor
* At least 15 minutes a day in the sunlight (with sunscreen on)
* Keep body weight within healthy BMI limits
* Daily multivitamin supplements (especially if you are losing weight)
When I think about how good it feels to sit in the sun for a few minutes, I do believe it feels good because it is suppose to be good for you. Our bodies are amazing works of art. If we take care of them, we can live happily and strong.
What do you do to ensure you get enough Vitamin D? Leave a comment below. Love and happiness. - Jenn