Recognize and Deal with Fitness Saboteurs

You’ve been working diligently on your fitness program–whether it’s exercising or food changes. You’re coasting along until you hit a bump in the road–it may be self-sabotage or somebody who consciously or unconsciously derails your wellness plans, leading to inevitable setbacks.

weight loss for baby boomers

Don’t let you or anybody else sabotage your fitness efforts!

We Baby Boomers and seniors need to learn to how to recognize these situations and quickly turn them around. Here is a list of common fitness saboteurs; learn how to combat them with practical strategies that really work from the American Council on Exercise (Fit Facts, 5 Common Fitness Saboteurs and How to Defeat Them):

1. Unrealistic Expectations—Novice exercisers get frustrated when they expect big results too soon after starting a fitness program. Because they haven’t lost a huge amount of weight or met other goals, they throw in the towel. To avoid this mistake, set realistic goals and practice extreme patience. If you stick with a regimen, your body will respond to exercise. It takes at least six weeks of regular exercise and sometimes more for physiological changes to kick in. It’s called the training effect. You’ll know it’s happening when your workouts start feeling easier; when you can tolerate longer, harder exercise sessions; and when you can do housework, yard work, or climb stairs with less effort.

2. Stress—When you’re up against a work deadline or the kids are sick, you may feel you can’t handle one more thing, including exercise. But taking time out to go for a brisk walk or workout is one of the best things you can do during times of intense stress. Exercise helps alleviate stress, anxiety, and depression and helps boost your mood, enabling you to cope with whatever you’re facing. Even a short workout is better than nothing.

3. The Unexpected—You were going to walk after work, but now you’ve been asked to work late. Or perhaps you planned to swim, but then you find out that the pool is closed for maintenance. Life happens, and you can either throw up your hands and say, “forget it,” or accept it and roll with it. Resilience is your ability to bounce back quickly from life’s surprises and setbacks. This can be improved with practice. As you become more resilient, you’re less likely to ditch your workout when something comes up. Instead, you’ll be able to quickly modify your plans and move forward.

4. Negative Self-Talk—“I’m so lazy, I’ll never be fit;” “I didn’t even exercise once this week;” “I’m such a loser.” Would you talk to a friend or loved one this way? Listening to negative self-talk isn’t motivating, so what’s the point? Negative self-talk only destroys your confidence and motivation to the point where you can’t visualize success. But you don’t have to put up with it. The next time you recognize a critical thought, stop it and replace it with a positive thought, like this: “I’m so proud of myself for walking at lunch time today. It took a lot of effort, but I did it.” Behavior change is hard. Give yourself some credit for every step you take toward your fitness goals. Practice intentionally giving yourself positive feedback and watch your motivation soar.

To discover other ways to shore up your fitness program, give me a call!

We can discuss some practical tips and discover if any of my programs or classes are a good fit for you.
If you’d like to schedule that call with me, just CLICK THIS LINK, and let me know in the message that you would like a 1-on-1 call with me right away and I will be in touch to schedule that – oh, and leave me your phone number in there too since email is not as reliable as it used to be! Thanks.

Surviving a 10-Hour Car Trip

We’re enjoying a vacation with family up at Lake Tahoe. The drive north (with a weekend stop-over in Auburn) was a 10-hour trip–too much time stuck on my bottom in our Expedition. I dread these adventures because of the large amount of sitting time. For Baby Boomers and seniors, long trips can be a real challenge for fitness.

My "torture chamber" for 10 hours!

My “torture chamber” for 10 hours!

Move Your Large Muscles
But there are ways to move your muscles while sitting in a car (similar to chair exercises)–as long as you’re not the driver! While you’re not lifting body weight, you can push and pull and stretch muscles, and help break up sedentary time.

Here are a few “exercises” you can do as a passenger in a vehicle to break up the monotony of a long drive (repeat each exercise/stretch 10 times, once every hour or two):

Legs/lower body–Note–all exercises done in this position: Sit near the edge of your chair (however far you can safely move while keeping the seatbelt in place), back straight, shoulders pulled back.

1) Leg lift: Lift your right leg at the hip; up and down (your leg will be bent at a right angle). Then do the same movement with your left leg. To increase the resistance, balance a purse or other object near your knee; lift 10 times, then hold leg in the lifted position for 10 seconds, then do 10 small pulse lifts in the raised position.
2) Glute squeeze: Place your feet parallel to each other, pointing forward, about shoulder width apart. Squeeze both buns and hold for 3 seconds.
3) Hamstring squeeze: With your feet flat on the ground, press into the floor with both feet, place your hands under your legs. Pull your feet back without actually moving them. You should feel your hamstring tighten up under the leg.
4) Toe tap: Lift your toes, and bring them down to a count of 3. Repeat 10 times, or until you begin to feel a “burn” in the muscles in the front/outside edge of your lower legs.
5) Heel tap: Lift your heels, and bring them down. Repeat 10 times, or until you begin to feel a “burn” in your calves.

Arms/lower body:
1) Raise up with both hands and push into the ceiling of the car. Hold for 3 seconds.
2) Place your hands on the outside of your thighs and push down while lifting your body off the seat. Hold for 3 seconds.
3) If you have a handle bar that you would grab to lift yourself into the car (and it is in front of you, not on the ceiling), hold with both hands and pull yourself. Repeat 10 times. (Or you can do this with one hand at a time).
4) Place your arms at your sides, elbows bent and hands forward making a right angle. Bring your elbows back and squeeze your shoulder blades together.
5) Place your arms at your sides and bring your shoulders up in a shrug. Then roll your shoulders forward, then backwards.
6) Interlace your fingers in front of your body, then turn your hands “inside out” so your palms are facing out. Bring your shoulders forward, hold for 15 – 30 seconds and feel a stretch in your upper back.

Looking for other ways to get more movement in your life?  Give me a call!

We can discuss some practical tips and discover if any of my programs or classes are a good fit for you.
If you’d like to schedule that call with me, just CLICK THIS LINK, and let me know in the message that you would like a 1-on-1 call with me right away and I will be in touch to schedule that – oh, and leave me your phone number in there too since email is not as reliable as it used to be! Thanks.

7 Lessons I Learned from A Former Pageant Queen

I had the privilege to share some time with dozens of women at the Grown Up Sexy conference in Los Angeles this past weekend. The two days were filled with uplifting messages and tips that apply to any Baby Boomer or senior who is seeking a lifestyle transformation–and isn’t that what getting strong and staying independent is all about?

lisa harris fitness trainer baby boomers

Transform your life and get what you want!

The event’s organizer is Lesley Nardini, a former Mrs. Oregon winner. According to Lesley, Grown Up Sexy means “looking good, feeling great and creating the life of your dreams so that you can be a shining light, helping others along the way.”

Here are seven take-aways from the weekend that I want to pass on to my readers:

1) It’s never too late to transform yourself and make a difference in other people’s lives! Two of the speakers were dynamic women in their 70s who have helped many people–both personally and professionally–and these women are still going strong! This message reinforced my mission to continue serving you all at age 63 and beyond!

2) It’s never too early to start planning your life! One of the gals in the audience was 14 years old. What I would have given to know the power of goals, consistency and positive thinking at that age! Hopefully this young lady can take some stories to heart and apply them to her life.

3) Which leads me to the power of goals. No matter what you desire in life, write it down, be specific, speak your goals and work on them daily. Whether it’s walking more often, picking up your weights twice a week or eating more fruits and vegetables, put it in writing and run your fingers over the words to solidify the goals in your subconscious.

4) Speak gratitude every day of your life, especially if you’re struggling with body image. Lesley recommends: before you go to sleep each night, “love on” all your body parts, especially the ones you wish you could change. And wake up feeling grateful that you have “two legs and two arms that work, and a body that’s still standing.” Amen to that!

5) Stop telling yourself negative stories. If you continue, you’ll surely attract these things into your life! Turn a negative into a positive, and repeat that positive self-talk over and over. My new mantra: I’m strong, I’m confident, I’m smart, I’m competent and I’m a money magnet! What do you want out of your life?

6) One of my big take-aways was a nightly Ta-Da! list. Instead of going to bed with a to-do list for the next day, give yourself praise for small things you accomplished that day–your ta-da moments–five per night. Yesterday my ta-das included: I posted a photo from the event on FaceBook, I posted a photo on Instagram (I do not enjoy social media!), I helped another woman at the meeting afford a cool business opportunity offered during the day, I introduced myself to a husband and wife team with experience in the media who I can tap into when I start looking at TV interviews. And the weekend’s speakers also drilled us about the benefits of getting outside our comfort zones–that’s what all these experiences did.

7) And finally, a reminder (in my case, she was preaching to the choir!): exercise can positively impact your self-image, confidence, energy, vitality and frame of mind. As always, keep moving!!!

Looking for other ways to reach your lifestyle goals?  Give me a call!

We can discuss some practical tips and discover if any of my programs or classes are a good fit for you.
If you’d like to schedule that call with me, just CLICK THIS LINK, and let me know in the message that you would like a 1-on-1 call with me right away and I will be in touch to schedule that – oh, and leave me your phone number in there too since email is not as reliable as it used to be! Thanks.

Eat Your Whey to Stronger Muscles

If you’ve read my blogs before, you know I often talk about sarcopenia, the age-related loss of muscles that can lead to proportionately more fat on the body–not to mention falls, disability and loss of independence.

Along with strength training, a major way to counter sarcopenia is to eat adequate amounts of protein. And for Baby Boomers and seniors, this also means the correct type of protein and proper amounts.

Along with strength training, adequate protein intake is needed to maintain strength!

Along with strength training, adequate protein intake is needed to maintain strength!

One of the best utilized sources of protein for muscle building is whey. Let’s explore a little about what it is, what it does and how it can be used.

Eating Her Curds and Whey…
In the process of making cheese, whey is the liquid remaining after milk is curdled. Whey protein is one of the best quality proteins available. It contains higher concentrations of branched-chain amino acids (protein building blocks) than other protein sources. The most important of these is leucine, an amino acid critical for muscle protein synthesis (leading to a stronger you!).

Whey protein is quickly absorbed. This is important for older adults, whose ability to make protein after mealtime is reduced. (Because our bodies don’t store a lot of protein, like we do for fats and carbohydrates, it’s important to eat adequate amounts throughout the day to replace used protein stores.) Recent studies show that whey helps limit protein loss, boosting its growth after meals.

Types of Whey
There are three major forms of whey: protein concentrate, isolate and hydrolysate. Whey  isolate usually has a higher percentage of protein than the concentrate; both of these forms contain a small amount of carbohydrates and fat. Whey protein hydrolysate is “pre-digested” and therefore more quickly absorbed.

In reality, many products contain one or two of these, and for the purpose of just augmenting your protein intake, it doesn’t matter much which form you use.

Two things to look for on the label:
1) 20 – 30 grams of protein per (1) scoop
2) low sugar (about 2 grams per scoop)

Please note:
Whey is not vegan. If you’re a lacto-ovo vegetarian, you can include it in your diet.  If you’re gluten-free, you can include it in your diet.

If you’ve never used whey protein powder before, buy the smallest package possible and experiment.

How to Use Whey
Incorporating whey protein powder into your diet can be an easy way to meet your protein need, especially if you don’t eat a lot of meat.

• The easiest way to use whey powder is to blend it with water, or with fruit and other ingredients for a smoothie.
• It can be baked into cookies or muffins, and added to pancake/waffle batters to increase the protein amount and healthfulness of the product.
• The powder can be added to hot cereals, soups, meatballs, casseroles or almost any kind of mixed item.
• Check online for recipe ideas and have fun!

Looking for other suggestions to maximize your strength and maintain your independence?

If you are ready to FINALLY TAKE CONTROL of your FITNESS, and want to speak with me in an unbiased format, take advantage of my FREE CALL. I promise to give you a few tips and things to look at immediately, plus we can discuss if any of my programs or classes are a good fit for you.
If you’d like to schedule that call with me, just CLICK THIS LINK, fill out my CONTACT FORM and let me know in the message that you would like a 1-on-1 call with me right away and I will be in touch to schedule that – oh, and leave me your phone number in there too since email is not as reliable as it used to be! Thanks.

This Is Your Brain on Exercise!

For both Baby Boomers and seniors, keeping your brain “in shape” ranks high on the list of wellness concerns! Fortunately, lifestyle choices–including food and exercise–can help support the aging brain!

You can support brain health with exercise.

You can support brain health with exercise.

Do these problems sound familiar?
• Are you concerned about your ability to continue living on your own?
• Do you have relatives with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease?
• Are you looking for ways to help support your brain as you age?

Aging is inevitable; it happens to all of us. For many, this means growing weak, becoming forgetful and getting sick. But it doesn’t have to be that way!

Imagine:
• Living independently for as long as possible!
• Having the confidence to play with your grandchildren!
• Learning activities you can do to help support a healthy brain!

Please join me for a live webinar on Wednesday, May 10, 2017, 4:00 p.m. PST, “Rebuild Your Brain with Exercise.”

In this dynamic 45-minute presentation, you’ll learn:
• normal changes that occur in the brain over the years
• how lifestyle choices can turn away–or invite– destruction of brain cells
• the surprising rebuilding effects of exercise
• 3 tips to boost brain activity

Register here for this talk, $20.00 (if you can’t attend the live webinar, a recording will be available after the event.)