It’s getting to be that time of year again….

It’s beginning to look a lot like…no not Christmas.  That’s come & gone for the year.  No, this has to do with the ritualistic obsession we have with the NEW YEAR, NEW YOU premise.

We’ve all made them.  You know those resolutions we love to hate, & often negate 2 weeks into the new year.  From tidying up our lives, organizing our finances, to the ever continuing saga of weight, here we go again.

What is so beguiling about this ritual, that we keep doing it over & over, with limited or mixed results?  Is it the idea of a fresh start?  We begin a new day, each & every day.  But few of us see this as a new or fresh start.  We aerate our lungs 12-24 times per minute.  This is rarely seen as a shining beginning.  Yet it is, & if you have ever struggled with breathing or shortness of breath, this is something you really don’t take for granted.

If exercise, cognitive nutrition, or seeing the scale numbers descend instead of ascend are part of your goals, consider this:  What exactly will change?  Perhaps making a list before going to the grocery store?  Meal planning?  Keeping a food diary?  What types of exercise do you find appealing?  If the answer is none, we can talk.  How many times per week can you commit to an exercise routine?  For how long?  Lastly, are you caught up in the trends?  Gluten free?  Low carb, no carb, high protein?  Coconut oil? These are just a few.  I could easily go on for another paragraph, perhaps even another post.

Perhaps, this year IS the year; for whatever you wish to achieve, to finally take shape.  I can tell you this however, it takes more than a little commitment, and answering the above questions.  It takes a change.  Not just effort–change.  Well what does THAT MEAN?

It’s the motto which appears on my logo, as well as the signs on my JEEP.  CHANGE YOUR MIND, NOT JUST YOUR BODY.  For that to occur, SOMETHING has to rise up in you.  And not just rise up, SUSTAIN YOU.  That SOMETHING won’t care whether you ever make it into a size 4 jean, or get into a bikini.  That may be nice, or an added benefit, but it won’t sustain you; at least not in the long-term.  When that SOMETHING takes hold though, you will know it.

Perhaps, it may even prompt you to give me a call, or drop me an email.  After all, it’s what I do.

 

Like what you see?  Then you’ll love what you hear.  LIFE TRAINING WITH CRYSTAL will be going podcast.  I will still continue writing,  This is just another venue, as well as a new venture.  I hope to have it as part of this blog, for easy access.  More to come.

 

Questions?  Comments?  Contact me at serrenity.c@gmail.com

 

 

What is health? Answering the question by changing the narrative

nude male turning

What does it mean to be healthy?  Ever considered this?  Not what it means to your doctor, significant other, or parameters set forth for a heart rate or BP.  No, what does healthy mean to you?  The answers, if you ask enough people, can be as numerous as the stars in the sky.

But I’m not asking them.  I’m asking you.  What is health?  Does it have a poster child?

We are now firmly planted in land of New Year, New You resolutions.  Perhaps you joined a gym.  Or returned to one.  Maybe you resolved to try something new in the fitness department.  Or, nutrition is topping your list this year. There can be little dispute if any of these are uppermost in your mindset.

And yet, if you don’t have a clear picture of what that “healthy lifestyle” looks like to you, how can you attain it?

Since I’ve asked this question, I’ll be the first to answer.

For me, health and the issues of life are not the sole property of the body.  Life, or consciousness governs the body, the body doesn’t govern life.  Think about that for a moment.  I know I had to, and for more than a moment.

If you tell your hand to wave, does it not respond?  Or if your thoughts drift in the middle of the workday, are you not the one to bring them back to the task at hand?  What does that?  The obvious answer would be your brain.  Right?  Sure, but what directs your brain to do this?  Your consciousness.  Therefore what you take into it, is what you will get out.

If you allow yourself to be blotting paper for every new fad, angle, exercise routine, vitamin trend, etc. what will you get?  If you haven’t established within yourself, a clear picture of what YOUR HEALTH looks like, what will you get? Now that’s a question worth answering!

The New Year should be about a New You.  But shouldn’t that New You be more about gaining insight and understanding, before you embark on a quest that leaves you floundering?

No one will be the beneficiary or the unwitting recipient of undermine but you.  Before this happens, or especially if has happened before with your resolutions, its time to put a picture to it.  And it shouldn’t be one dictated by a size, magazine cover, or exercise trend.  And while healthcare providers may have their idea of what this entails, in the end, they’re not the one doing the work.  They’re not usually sweating alongside of you during that last turn around the track, staring at a plate that looks half empty rather than half full, or to the contrary, putting on a dress that no longer requires the extra firm version of SPANX.  No, as a nurse, I can tell you we look at lab values, parameters for heart rate, respiratory rates, & BP.

However, because of my decision to work at the opposite end of the spectrum (from acute/chronic to now wellness/prevention), I see such delineations differently.  They tell one part of the story–like a prologue.  It’s you who really writes this story, and dictates the epilogue.

 

All for now.  Keep up and keep at it.

Questions? Comments?  Contact me at serrenity.c@gmail.com

New Year New You? Better read this 1st….

rocker nude  Happy New Year!  First and foremost, thank you, my loyal readers and followers.

The New Year always brings promise–promise of a better life, and for many, an attempt to shed unwanted pounds.  For some, it will happen; for many it will not.  I’ve often wondered “why?”  Everyone starts committed, but what happens along the way?  Before you hop on the NEW YEAR NEW YOU bandwagon, keep this in mind.  It may mean the difference between setting your goal, and actually reaching it.

SLOW & STEADY

I realize this may be common sense, but its worth going over anyway.  If your idea of running or working out consists of running to the mailbox (depending upon how far your mailbox is), gradual and steady are the operative words here.

It’s easy to get caught up in the hype.  Friends and family are buying workout gear, shoes, and everywhere you look there is a new exercise trend or gadget.  From juicers to blenders, “healthy” recipes, to “try this and lose 6lbs in 2 weeks,” it’s easy to get swept up in the fitness tide.  DO IT, BUT DON’T OVER DO IT.

WANT A NEW YOU? START WITH A NEW PLAN

For many, this is not the first time at the dance.  You know what I mean.  You’ve made this resolution before.  How far did you get?  Did you reach your goal?  If so, what happened?  If not, what happened?  Your intentions were there, your commitment was resolute.  Fast forward 4 weeks later, and for whatever reason, you just aren’t as motivated.  True enough, you’re not alone.  But that isn’t going to get the weight off, let alone keep it off.

What might have gone wrong is a lack of planning.  For example, your plan was to get to the gym, 3 days a week, for 60-90 minutes.  However, you got stuck working a double shift twice this week.  The other days your husband couldn’t pick up the kids, or worse yet, your sitter cancelled.  The one day you could get to the gym, you were just too tired.  The weekend is time to play catch up.  What happened?  LIFE– that’s what happened.  What you fail to realize is that this is your life, and you have more control than you think.

TIME, INVESTMENT, & STRATEGY

Financial planning is not something most of us take lightly.  So why should your healthy lifestyle require less effort than your finances?  If you’re willing to pour over portfolios, sweat out strategy, and insist on insight into potential investment, shouldn’t your weight loss goals require the same due diligence?  If they don’t, well, get ready for the never-ending story of new year resolutions.

I don’t presume to know everyone’s predicament, situation, or needs.  As a nurse and trainer, I am results oriented.  Nursing has taught me to embrace evidence based practice, while considering specific patient needs.  However, the outcome is still the same:   Transition the client from one point of health to a better one–with progression, consistency, and maintenance in mind.

This requires strategy, time, and investment.  But first and foremost, it requires a plan.  Over the next few posts, Personal Training with Crystal will endeavor to help you plan.  So if you are serious about NEW YEAR NEW YOU, and want to close the chapter on weight loss resolutions, stay tuned.  Time to start a new book.

All for now.  Keep up and keep at it.

Questions?  Need additional help?  Contact me at serrenity.c@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Got a minute?

teaching fitnessOk, I’m asking for more than a minute–more like 15-20 of them.

Newer research suggests that intermittent bouts of exercise, is better than an hour spent at the gym.  Furthermore, if your time is spent sitting all day, that hour you spent working out is offset by the hours you spend sedentary.  Think about it.  If you are sitting 85-90% of the time, while only 10% (or less) is spent exercising, does that add up to an active lifestyle?

Yes, a large part of this investment is nutrition.  However, if you can find 10-20 min, 3-4 times a day, to walk, cycle, do a portion of a workout dvd, run, throw or kick a ball, your metabolism begins to believe you are active.  It then starts to behave as if you are active.  What does that mean? Better use of stored fat for calorie expenditure.  You may also avoid the “munchies” that an hour or two of high intensity exercise often provides.

You don’t have to take my word for it.  A similar story appeared on Dr. Oz–with Chris Powell illustrating short, but effective exercises designed to rev up your metabolism.  I’m sure if you search his site, you will find it.

Consider this in the meantime.  To what do you attribute the popularity of DVDs divided in 15-20 minute intervals?  Why is something like Tony Horton’s “10 minute trainer” gaining attention?  Better yet….why do so many fail to stick to an exercise program, that requires an hour or longer, 4-6x a week?  Need another “for instance?”  New Year’s resolutions.  A high percentage of them involve losing weight.  Of that, perhaps fifty percent or more will join a health club.  After about 6 weeks into the new year (I’m being generous) how many are still there?

Yes, life is busy–and there are only 24hrs in day.  We all must take care of families, eat, sleep, and work.  But that doesn’t excuse any one of us, from taking care of ourselves.  Take a walk; take your kids for a walk.  Run around the park with them.  Climb a monkey bar–great exercise for agility.  Whatever it is–10 minute yoga, 15 minute walk at lunch, 20 minute run, 15 minutes of “hide and seek,” it will add up; and more to the point, so will the benefits.

All for now.  Keep up and keep at it.

Questions? Comments? Contact me at serrenity.c@gmail.com