recovery needed  You’ve been told weight loss, exercise, and nutrition must be your priority.  That monologue is usually followed by an “or else” phrase.  You may be hearing it for the first time from your physician, or the hundred and first from your spouse.  The underlying theme might carry more weight from the MD.  However the meaning remains the same–get up and get moving.

You’ve seen the ads for P90X.  INSANITY pops up on an infomercial at 2am, just as you were starting to doze off.  It promises results in 60 days.  After previewing parts of it on You-Tube, you understand why.  You’ve also seen ads for Urban Rebounder, 10 minute trainer, and Tracy Anderson on nights when the television was your Ambien.  Yet for all of the choices offered; the rigor, intensity, or daily grind wasn’t for you.

Another scenario.  You want to exercise but your joints?  Not so much.  There are days when getting out of bed and walking to the bathroom is a challenge.  Sitting on the toilet and then getting up? Well–that’s another story.  What choices are there for you?

Believe it or not, the advice remains “get up and get moving.”  But how?  With what?  Doing what?  Here’s a few options.

1. Sit & Be Fit.  If the description above is part of your life, even if only a few times a month, these videos offer movement on your “off” days.  You-tube has a few selections; ranging from 5-30 minutes.  The key to remember is that even with altered or limited mobility, you have to move.  Range of motion is essential for ADLs (activity of daily living).

2. T-tapp.  T-tapp is a series of exercises isometrically designed.  They are low intensity, and promise to rev up even the most stubborn metabolism.  Posture and “muscle activation” are the core principles here.  Check out

3. Yogalates.  This is a video I found on You-tube, which is divided into sections.  If you are looking for a slow-paced introduction to yoga, this might be the answer.  The instructor is soothing, articulate, and moves with intention.  The entire video is 90 minutes, but again, there are 4 sections to choose from.

4. 60 minute Yin Yoga for Spine.  This is another You-tube find.  It may be an ideal start for those wishing to begin a yoga practice.  Even if yoga isn’t quite your thing, it will serve tired, achy muscles well.  Stretch days should not be an option; they should be part of your routine.  You can also check out for more ideas.

5. Tai Chi.  Tai chi is quite possibly 2500 years old, if not older.  While many videos display smiling seniors performing rhythmic movements, don’t be fooled.  There are more rigorous forms of Tai Chi–including techniques used in MMA.  Whether you are seventy-five looking to improve posture and mobility, or twenty-five using it as part of your Crossfit routine, there is something for everyone.  Meditative as well as restorative, Tai Chi is adaptable–yet its principles remain the same.  Effective breathing coupled with fluid technique.

As with any workout, cleanse, or change in dietary habit, it is always a good idea to talk to your medical professional.  You are responsible for your own healthcare.  However, part of that responsibility means enlisting the guidance of a trusted physician or nurse practitioner.  This is essential if you are just beginning to exercise, have mobility issues, in need of cardiac rehab, or taking prescription medication.

While not every exercise is for every body, every body is in need of some form of exercise.

All for now.  Keep up and keep at it. 

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yoga female on top

We are all searching-perhaps desperately–for the next big thing; especially when it comes to battling the bulge.

From personal experience, I can relay what has worked for me.  However, I’m also interested in what has worked for my readers.

What has worked for me?  Primarily, changing my mind about what being fit really means; but more on that under a different entry.

Changing my exercise routine throughout the week

I’ve always enjoyed running.  After the birth of my son, I was looking for a way to lose the “baby weight,” and then some.  My husband asked me what I wanted for Christmas that year.  He was certain I would ask for jewelry, or a memento commemorating our son’s birth.  I did just that–the memento I wanted was a treadmill.

Running became my obsession.  It was the only exercise I took seriously.  Working a busy day shift in PACU (recovery room day surgery), I would get up and run 4-6 miles prior to heading to work.  However, I quickly found unless I was upping my mileage weekly, the weight loss slowed.  Eventually it stopped.  I started to GAIN weight, even though I was running consistently.  I became discouraged.  I soon realized a change in attitude, as well as routine was required.

For me, change came in the form of DVDs.   It also came in the form of beginning hot yoga classes.

So what do I do now?  I incorporate yoga, running, and my favorite DVD into my week.  Running may mean the treadmill or trail.  I realize to running purists the treadmill is anathema.  However, the treadmill is what started me on the road to relieving stress, initiating weight loss, and quieting my nerves after a hectic day.  Running–treadmill or trail–remains to this day, my preferred method of exercise.

DVDs can be a great way to change-up your routine.  I recommend to clients to select one form of a home workout; one that can be performed in under an hour.  This means excuses become void about having time for the gym.  My preference for my clients (after a thorough assessment and MD visit) is to select a DVD one to two levels above their current fitness level.  It may mean taking breaks during the routine; and I encourage them to do so.  Then, get right back at it.  Eventually, you will find you are working into it, instead of growing out of it.  Yet you should expect to grow out of it–if you are faithful to that part of your exercise routine.

Yoga appears to be the new darling of the fitness world.  However, HOT yoga definitely kicks things up a notch.  Room temperature can vary anywhere between 98-105F.  In a crowded room, expect it to be even hotter.  Hydration before, during, and after is key to this workout.  Know this is not for everyone.  Those with heat intolerance, the elderly, certain cardiac issues, or those with problems staying hydrated because of medications, may find this is not for them.  As with any workout, this is a discussion to have with your MD first.

What has not worked for me? What wouldn’t I recommend?  Check out my next entry under FITNESS.  In the meantime, WHAT HAS WORKED FOR YOU?  Let me know.

Questions? Comments?  Contact me at



fitness model male

What do you have in your house?  It’s a worthwhile question.  And, it applies to more than storage space, clothes for your favorite charity, or leftovers in the fridge.  It is also applicable to your workout.

When counseling clients, I refer to “what do you have in your toolbox?”  For one such client, it meant re-thinking what workouts meant.  Once an avid runner, he now faced hip replacement surgery.  Though he hadn’t run in many years, he felt he could “knock off” 35+ pounds if only he could run.  I told him there were many alternatives to running; but he wasn’t enthused.

I visited the health club he recently joined, and pointed out the cross-trainer.  His first try on it yielded “this will take some getting used to.”  “That may be,” I told him.  “However, you will find it a good alternative to running at this time.”  Although this is still a work in progress for him, it is part of his “toolbox,” since running is not.

My recommendation to him, as well as others is this:  workouts needed to be varied, accessible, and come with a back-up plan.  If you like to go to the gym, but your car isn’t cooperating, what about a DVD?  DVDs can be life-savers if you can’t get to the health club.  The key is selecting one at your fitness level, or a step above.  If you have led a pretty sedentary lifestyle, probably a high intensity workout isn’t for you–UNTIL you progress.  Start with something that elevates your heart rate, yet keeps it within range for your age.  You should feel yourself working up a sweat, and once finished, know you have had a workout.  There are many DVDs available, for all fitness levels and intensities.  Discuss your choice, goals, and overall health status with your MD, before beginning a routine.

Varied workouts keep your body guessing, rest overused muscle groups, while strengthening those overlooked in your normal routine.  If you enjoy strength training, skip the gym and try a yoga class–if you are really up for a challenge, make it a HOT YOGA class.  You will be surprised at the workout it gives your body, and the resolve it gives your mind.

Again, it comes down to “what’s in your toolbox?”  As with any, it should be well-stocked and anticipate almost every situation.

All for now.  Keep up and keep at it.

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