A Fresh Page

I was reading in a book recently about the wonders of a clean sheet of paper. It made me think back to when I was a kid opening up my new notebooks and packs of paper for the start of school. I loved the cracking noise each page made in the notebooks as I turned them. You know the sound! The notebooks and paper packs were so new that the pages were still stuck together from the cutting and binding!

For me these new pages meant a fresh start, a new opportunity to exceed and do well. I always thought to myself, "I won't miss one day of school" or "I will do EVERY last bit of my homework, AND check it twice over for errors." For the most part I was a pretty good student. I never had perfect attendance but I did do my homework even though it was sometimes five minutes before class!

If only things were so simple now! Now, it is the season of "do or die." I don't mean to sound so dramatic! I'm not saying that you will die if you don't do what you say you are going to do, but if you get in the habit of putting off or not following through with your plans, the chances accomplishing your goals before you leave this side of Heaven are slim.

I had a very big Aha! moment recently when I realized what the root of the many struggles are when it comes to weight loss, exercise, and overall healthy living. I kept wondering why so many people ultimately fail when it comes to their weight loss goals or keeping up with their health. The answer is actually a very obvious one, but still a snake that bites! The answer is, most of the diets and weight loss programs out there stop at dieting and exercise. They don't address what is behind the scenes. What brought about this lifestyle of unhealthy living? What are your true motives behind losing weight or wanting to live healthier?

If you think to yourself, "this year, I want to loose 20 pounds" and then stop there, chances are your goal will be forgotten or pushed aside by mid year. It's not that you didn't care or didn't try, it's simply, life (the unhealthy one you were trying to escape) got in the way! You HAVE TO set your goals according to your true motives and needs! If you don't know what those are, figure that out first! If you don't get to the heart of the matter first, you will not be able to set an accurate goal or be able to plan for one. This might not make a lot of sense and if it that is the case, GOOD! You're on the right track! Start scratching your head and thinking about what it means!

Do you feel like you just can't keep up with your kids and so you are irritable at play time? Are you worried about your health issues and what it could mean for your family? Are you tired of the stress and feelings of defeat when your diet fails?

What you need is a new page, a fresh start! Take a few minutes to sit quietly and think about what it is you would like to accomplish and why. A common response I get anytime I mention "taking a few minutes" is "there are none extra." We all live in a busy society, and I believe you when you say "I am just too busy", but I promise those minutes exist! Really it comes down to what you feel like doing vs what you need to do. Even I am guilty of that!

I don't ever want to get up extra early and on many occasions choose to sleep for a few more minutes. What I have realized though is that on the days that I do win that battle and get up early, my day goes SO much better! On those days when down time in nonexistant (fyi, my kids don't nap) when I do get a few minutes, I just want to sit and stare blankly into space. I want that so much more over retreating to my room and reading for a few minutes. Like getting up early, the times that I do choose for those precious minutes to go to a good read, I feel much more energized afterwards!

This year I want you all to choose to accomplish your goals! I want to you to realize what you can accomplish and celebrate in reward at the end of 2009!

There are three main steps to achieving these goals:

1. You have to begin. - Sounds like common sense, but really most people don't even get that far!

2. You have to show up EVERY DAY! - By show up I mean you have put forth the effort from the moment you open your eyes every day.

3. You have to finish. - Once again, sounds like common sense, but it is not uncommon for people to start projects and leave them unfinished (I may have wrote the book on this one)!

One of my goals this year is to lead anyone and everyone willing to building a PERMANENT healthy lifestyle. I don't want you to go on some fad diet or some crazy boot camp. I want you eat wonderful foods AND still loose weight. I want you exercise daily AND not feel exhausted afterwards (actually you will feel even more energized)!

For my local mamas, I am excited to bring you some fun and challenging workouts at Stroller Strides! For those you not local, I will be posting easy exercises for you whole body (abs, bottoms, shoulders, you name it), healthy recipes, and guiding steps and encouragement to achieve your goals!

I wish you all a blessed and Happy New Year!

See you in 2009!


Stroller Strides Stroller now available at Target!

Target, that store we all know and love (see Target post) has jumped on the bandwagon and is now offering the Stroller Strides stroller online! Yeah! Luckily I already own one so I won't be tempted for a new purchase...at least for now!

If you are in the market for one of these click here for ordering info!

Weekly Luna Tip

Pregnancy and breast feeding put demands on your calcium needs. You don't need more calcium when you are pregnant or breast feeding but it is much easier to become deficient during these times. If you aren't getting the 1000 mg RDA of calcium a day, your body will take what it needs from your bones to provide for your baby. Consume 3-4 calcium containing foods each day such as cottage cheese, milk (or the chocolate version if you prefer!), yogurt, cheese, calcium fortified orange juice or a LUNA bar.


A Mom's 12 Days of Christmas

I follow Dawn Meehan's blog because she is so funny! Here is a great song that every mom can relate too!

Here's to enjoying the Christmas season!


Moms with a Mission

I am supposed to be posting these helpful tips given to us by Stroller Strides and Luna as a part of Moms with a Mission, but I haven't exactly been on the ball with that so I am starting early on my New Year's resolution of posting each weekly Moms with a Mission blurb!

For December Moms with a Mission is focusing on nutrition and fitness for women and children. Here ya go...

Choose Organic Fruits and Vegetables

Some organic foods may provide a nutrition boost. A research review of 41 studies conducted by the University of California at Davis found that, on average, organic produce contains as much as 27 percent more vitamin C, 21 percent more iron, and 29 percent more magnesium compared with traditionally grown foods. The kinds of packaged organic foods that now fuel the category's growth, such as cookies, baked goods, and boxed meals, also benefit from a similar perception of healthfulness.

Consuming fewer pesticides is better for you & your baby. Eating the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables each day, on average, exposes you to 20 pesticides each day - if you eat the 12 least contaminated (organic) it translates to 2 pesticides per day - according to the Environmental Working Group. By choosing organic food whenever possible, you are supporting sustainable agricultural methods that result in less pollution, nutrient rich soil, increase biodiversity, and animal habitat protection.

You're at the market trying to decide which apples to buy, if those apples were required to label the residues of all the pesticides, herbicides, hormones, antibiotics, and fertilizers in there, which would you choose for you, your baby, and your family?

Highest in Pesticides: These 12 popular fresh fruits and vegetables are consistently the most contaminated with pesticides - buy these organic whenever possible.
Bell Peppers
Grapes (imported)
Red Raspberries

Lowest in Pesticides: These 12 popular fresh fruits and vegetables consistently have the lowest levels of pesticides.
Corn (sweet)
Peas (sweet)

Americans are well aware of the health benefits of eating fruit and vegetables, but most people need to double the amount they currently consume in order to meet the latest dietary guidelines for Americans. All forms of fruits and veggies count - fresh, frozen, 100% juice, canned & dried.

Fitness Tip: Involve your children in your physical activities (such as Stroller Strides class). When children see mom & dad exercising and enjoying it, they'll realize that exercise is fun, and will want to join in.