Physical

Winter Workouts

Winter Workouts

I step outside before dawn to be dazzled by the diamond-dusted world lit up by our lamppost in the front yard. It’s amazing…the quiet hush of the snowflakes falling. The snow is a shimmering blanket undisturbed until my fresh footprints look like stitches on a quilt. On winter mornings like this, I’m glad I left my comfort zone to catch a glimpse of this majestic sight. Many studies show that just taking an invigorating outdoor walk for 20 minutes can improve mood, self-esteem, and wellbeing. Physically, you burn more calories keeping your core temperature elevated in the cold, plus adding resistance when marching in the snow. Often, winter is a snowplow block to our exercise routine, but here are three ways to enjoy the gift of winter’s beauty and natural benefits! In Northern Ohio, there is a saying, “there is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing.” Layering is the key to staying

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Can the Right Shoe Change Your Life?

Can the Right Shoe Change Your Life?

Just like Disney’s Cinderella, we want to succeed in this world and perhaps live a life worth remembering. Whether or not we end up living the fairytale or having any of this life documented on DVD like a Disney princess, I think we all might agree that our choices help (or hinder) the direction in which we travel through this world. For Cinderella, her life changed when her perfectly fitted shoe identified her as “the one” and propelled her into the arms of her Prince Charming where she lived happily ever after. For me, part of a fairytale life includes fitness, balance, and long-term wellness; therefore, I’m searching for my perfectly fitted shoe as well! And if your fairytale includes striving toward an active lifestyle, I ask you to consider: can the right shoe change your life? If the answer is yes (and I believe it is when it comes

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Fueled by Friends

Fueled by Friends

Of all the blessing in life from God, the gift of friendship, especially fitness buddies, should not be overlooked.  During an eight-week study, research found that people who exercised with a partner did more exercise during the brief study.  Other research has found that if you find a partner, you will stick with the exercise routine even six months later. With every blessed mile, friends have walked, run, biked and exercised shoulder to shoulder with every wellness success.  What if you could double your chances for fitness success and exercise would be more enjoyable, fit into your schedule, and pull you through the fitness rut?  Proverbs 18:24 states: “One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.”  Reliable friends can be the difference between your exercise habit success or failure. Start with a collaborative arrangement that works for you!  

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Top Five Reasons to Attend Wellness Week

Top Five Reasons to Attend Wellness Week

It is an experience that reaches us right where we are when we step foot in the retreat center—if we are ready to learn,  if we need to feel closer to God, if we are looking for a way to implement healthy eating habits or if we are looking for ways to exercise at our own personal level. If we arrive feeling hopeless, there are lifelines waiting for us when we get there! There is always someone available to talk through areas in which we may be stuck.. Wellness Week is an opportunity to hear from others about how their health journey has changed their life; that inspires me.  Wellness Week teaches us it is ok to “not get it right” all the time. I love arriving and meeting the first timers. I am so excited for them, because I know they will not be the same when they leave,

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Ten Fun Summer Activities that Burn 50 Calories

Ten Fun Summer Activities that Burn 50 Calories

Summer is here!  Summer sparks our interest in getting outdoors.  Whether it’s a simple walk, or a bike ride to the park for a picnic, this season seems to motivate us to get out there and move.  Quick bursts of activity that we may not consider exercise can be fun ways to get outdoors, enjoy the sunshine and squeeze in some exercise time in the process. Here is a list of 10 ways to burn around 50 calories (based on a 150-pound person). Combining a few a day can add up! Go For A Bike Ride. It’s the perfect outdoor activity, and fun for the whole family!  Play Frisbee. A quick six-minute game with friends will improve your hand-eye coordination. Wash Your Car . Just 15 minutes of scrubbing will do it! Play With Your Kids. Fooling around with your little ones is more of a workout than you might think. Twelve minutes of

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In Step with My Personal Trainer

In Step with My Personal Trainer

Many years ago I was a mess! I was huffing and puffing going up stairs, my weight was out of control, and I had to take painkillers to get to sleep. The worst moment was when my knee gave way as I walked down my back- yard steps.  I knew I needed to do something about my weight, but I also knew I needed to spend more time in prayer.  As I picked myself up that day, I decided I would get up about fifteen minutes earlier the next morning and walk—and I would pray. The next morning The List whispered to me: You are so tired. You deserve to sleep in a bit more. Besides, it’s really dark out there! Nonetheless, I would not listen to my own excuses anymore. What I really deserved was to get healthy so I could be my best self for my four kids,

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Sizzling Summer Workout – Just 15 Minutes

Sizzling Summer Workout - Just 15 Minutes

This is a great workout you can do just about anywhere and does not take much time.  If you work at about 80% of your capacity, you should burn approximately the same amount of calories as a 30-minute walk, maybe even more! It’s called the 5-4-3-2-1. We will do five exercises, for one minute each, alternating cardio and strength exercises. After you have completed the first set of five exercises take about a one-minute break to hydrate and review what’s next. Proceed with the four exercises, three exercises, two and then one, all for one minute each. If you have time and want to make the workout longer you can work back up the pyramid using the same exercises, finishing with the five. You will need: A set of weights – five pounds should do nicely Workout mat Stop watch or IPhone to time the exercises Printed copy of this

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Winning Upper Body Strength

Winning Upper Body Strength

Whenever I’m less than motivated to exercise my upper body, I’m inspired by the story found in Exodus 17:8-16. Joshua and the Israelites were fighting the war with the provoking Amalek, and whenever Moses raised his hands, Israel was winning. When Moses lowered his hands, Amalek was winning. Moses’ arms began to fatigue, so Aaron and Hur held up his hands on each side. The Bible says, “his hands remained steady until the sun went down,” with a combination of all three men’s upper-body strength.  Joshua defeated Amalek and its army in battle. Besides winning battles, here are upper-body strength tips for you. To find out your current level of upper-body strength, try the one-minute pushup test. It is a fantastic way to test your upper-body strength and endurance of your core, chest, and arms. Do as many pushups as you can in one minute by pressing yourself up with arms fully

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Fitbit Faith

Fitbit Faith

“I’m going downstairs and make sure the doors are locked,” announced my husband one night after I’d already collapsed in bed. I smirked at his hasty chivalrous exit, as I knew his true motivation was either he had yet to make his daily Fitbit step goal, or he was close to beating me or another friend on the number of steps in friendly competition. I wearily thought, “Did I get my daily time and steps with Christ today?” I call it my “Fitbit faith”—a modern version of putting on the “full armor of God” (Ephesians 6:11-16). Verse 11states, “Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” For the fitness enthusiast hopeful or the beginning soul exerciser, here are four launch pad ideas to use fitness trackers to increase your activity and increase your Fitbit faith. Obtain equipment for success.  There

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The Power of the Couple

The Power of the Couple

Having a workout partner can often be the difference in achieving your fitness goals, and your spouse can be the best workout partner.  Research shows when one spouse improves his or her exercise regimen, the other spouse is significantly more likely to join in. Laura Cobb, a Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health co-author of the research states, “There’s an epidemic of people in this country who don’t get enough exercise and we should harness the power of the couple to ensure people are getting a healthy amount of physical activity.” My husband, Vince, joined me on my journey from the sedentary, obese life to an active and healthy lifestyle. Transformed, we motivate and enjoy our time with each other. Walking and hiking are perhaps the easiest. When I started walking, Vince joined me. We walked our neighborhood, gradually building up to two miles each morning. With greater confidence,

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