Showing posts with label exercise. Show all posts
Showing posts with label exercise. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

2 X 4 Running Challenge

October means so many things to me - monsters, candy, pumpkins, happy children...

But as the years go by there is something else that has become more important to me than (dare I say it) Halloween.  October is breast cancer awareness month.  

This is my mom.  Isn't she beautiful?!  She is one of the most amazing people I know.  I often say, "If I become half the woman that my mom is, I will make it to heaven."  And anyone who knows her would agree with me.  

I remember when she was diagnosed with breast cancer.  It turned our world upside-down.  I hated seeing her sick and in pain.  I am happy to report that she is cancer free.  

Whenever I run in the month of October (at the gym, around the neighborhood, a 5k, anything) I dedicate it to her.  Last year I ran My First 5k in her honor.  

This year I am not participating in a 5k.  Instead, I am going to do a running routine that will help me be consistent the entire month.  I am really good about running the first two weeks of the month, and then...I putter out.  

Not this time.

I call my new running schedule the 2 X 4 Running Challenge.  It's very simple:

Run 2 miles a day, 4 days a week.  

That's it.  Easy huh?  

I invite each of you to join me this October in the 2 X 4 Challenge.  Dedicate your running to someone you love who has had cancer.  Let me know how it goes.  I'd love to hear from you!

And remember ladies - Get your mammograms!  Do your self evaluations!  See your doctor!  Be vigilant!

This is your life we are talking about.

You Might Also Like:
Being Happy with Who You Are
Diastasis Recti Exercises
Healthy Cookie Dough

Monday, June 3, 2013

A Happy Woman

It's interesting how the media has portrayed women over the years.  Back in my grandmother's era a perfect woman had lots of curves and "some meat on her bones."  When I was growing up the women on TV were size 0, had tan, flawless skin, and perfect hair.  Lately, the media has been pushing the idea that "real women" can be heavier and still wear a bikini.  

I recently read this article titled: Real Women...? that argues that every woman is a "real woman" no matter her size or shape.    

While I like the idea that every woman is "real" in this way, I wish that instead of wanting to be real, we women would work to be happy.  

I am at a point in my life where my focus is on being a wife and a mother.  It is not so much on myself.  Creating memories that will last and educating my children is my #1 priority.  

And I am happy!

This is me on my wedding day 5 years ago.

Am I the same weight today as I was when I was first married?  


And I don't expect I ever will be.  No matter how much I exercise, having children has altered my figure in ways that can't be repaired without some form of tummy tuck.  (I know some of you will disagree with this, but that is what I think.)  

The question is: do I care?  


Absolutely not!

I am so happy.  In fact, I have never been happier!  I love being a mom!  Each day I feel that I am doing something worthwhile with my life.  

When I look in the mirror do I hate what I see?  


Not in the slightest.

Granted, there are times that I know deep down that I could (and probably should) do more to be healthy.  This realization helps me choose to eat better and exercise more religiously--for a while anyway.

But I don't change my lifestyle because I feel bad about how I look.  

I do it because it makes me happy!  The improvement makes me happy.

If exercising to look good in a swimming suit is what makes you happy--go for it!  If you want an ice cream cone because it will make you happy--eat one!  Eleanor Roosevelt said, "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."  Don't let any social stigma dictate your happiness.  

Be you!

Be PROUD to be you!

Love yourself!

Find something to do in your life that makes you happy!

And don't judge others based on their appearance!  

You don't know other people's circumstances.  They could be "letting themselves" go because they are working through some trial that you know nothing about.  They could be larger than you and in the best shape of their life.

And it shouldn't matter!

Who are we to tell others what they should and should not be?  If they are happy with who they are that should be enough.  

You might also like:
Homemade Granola
Diastasis Recti Exercises - Videos
Nothing Past 9 Rule - For Your Sanity and Overall Well-Being

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Kid Exercise/Action Cards

Kids love to move.  I remember when I was little I would invite the neighbor kids over to my house to do my parents' Jane Fonda exercise video with me.  We bounced with the best of them and had a great time.

Some mornings I go to the gym.  To my kids it is a mysterious place--I put on my tennis shoes, walk out the door, and when I come back my face is as red as my hair.  But I'll admit I don't exercise with my kids very much.  It is time to change that.

I printed off 3 different sets of action cards: animal (I made these), ABC (link to printable below), and Backyardigan (link to printable below as well).  These will be a great preschool/toddler resource!

Animal Action Cards

I made these animal action cards for my kids.  I can't figure out how to make them into a printable (I'll have to ask my hubby how to do that), but here's the list of actions for you:

Animal Action Cards:
Swim like a fish
Stretch like a cat
Chase your tail like a dog
Pretend to be an elephant
Roll like a pill bug
Run like a cheetah
Flap like a bird
Do the crab walk
Do the spider walk
Hop like a bunny
Jump like a kangaroo
Slither like a snake
Waddle like a duck
Pretend to be a monkey
Gallop like a horse

You can type them up, add some free clip art, and print them out for your kids.  Print them on cardstock or laminate them if you want them to be sturdier.

Princess was super excited to try the actions on the cards.  I turned on some Disney music and the kids went to town exercising.  

Getting ready to roll like a pill bug.  

Roll, roll, roll.

Two slithery snakes.  

Do the crab walk.

These cards would be great for a preschool unit on animals.  Work those large motor skills!

ABC Action Cards

I found these cute ABC action cards online at Homeschool Share.  You can go straight to the ABC action cards printable HERE.  

Aren't they cute?  

Such great balance.

Dance!  This was Goofy's favorite card.

Jump Over some pillows.  

Can you tell that she's having fun?

Lift your legs.

These cards would be great for teaching toddlers or preschoolers the alphabet.  Do the action for each letter you teach.  At the end of the unit do all of the actions together.  

Backyardigan Action Cards

I admit that my kids have never seen The Backyardigans, but these cards are super cute.  

I love the bright colors.  You can print these exercise cards here at Nick Jr.


Princess is waving to the stars.  

Bug Action Cards
There are some Bug Action Cards if you are doing a preschool unit on bugs.  I didn't have enough ink left in my printer, but you can print them off here.  They are super cute!

The kids had so much fun exercising together.  They have pulled the cards out to exercise every morning since I printed them off.

Teaching my kids to exercise is so important.  (I don't know why I've put it off so long.)  I hope I have inspired you to involve your kids in exercising and living a healthy lifestyle.  What's your favorite movement activity to do with your kids?  Share in the comments.  I'd love to hear from you!

More Healthy Ideas:
Dice Workout

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Yoga - The Bad Posture Remedy (Video Link)

I am now going to show you something frightening.  I mean truly horrifying!  Are you ready?

I'm not talking about my cute husband or the picture in general.  I am talking about my posture.  It's hideous!  I actually call my normal stance "the vulture."  My neck comes forward, my shoulders scrunch up to my neck and roll forward, and basically I am bound to have back and neck problems for the rest of my life if I don't do something about it.  I got this way from years of playing the piano (without listening to my teachers about proper posture) and nursing my babies.  My husband tells me I have the worst posture for a person under 70 that he's ever seen.

I joined a group of ladies in my church who do yoga.  I had never done yoga or really heard anything about it.  I didn't even know you needed a mat.  To put it bluntly, I am not very good.  My tree pose kept toppling.  My dolphin was dead in the water.  My warrior never made it to battle.  But you know what?  I still loved it!

The ladies in my ward only meet once a week and I know that I need more help than that.  Lots more!  I do the diastasis recti ab exercise videos that I found a little while ago to help my stomach.  Then, I checked out a website I found on Pinterest called that had free online yoga videos.

There were so many options to choose from.  Tonight I tried the restoring equilibrium video for beginners.  It was just what I needed after a long day.  I could really feel it working my chest, shoulders, and back.  I am going to do this video every night for as long as I need to to help my posture.

Keep your fingers crossed for me that my "vulture pose" will soon be a thing of the past.

Other ideas to keep you moving:

Popsicle Stick Workout
50 Up, 50 Down Workout

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Diastasis Recti Exercises (Videos)

It's a new year, and, like most of you, I have made some health goals.  One of these goals is to get my stomach back in shape.  

I have three wonderful kids.  I wouldn't trade them for anything in the world--not even a hot body.  I tell my mom that after I die I'm going be a hot angel with a hot bod as a reward for having kids.  

All joking aside, I still would like to be in the best shape I can be in with what I have to work with.  Unfortunately, after having kids I have a stomach condition called Diastasis Recti.  Basically, it is a separation of the stomach muscles.  To learn more about Diastasis Recti and how to test to see if you have it click on this link.

After having my third child, Bud, I have been afraid of abdominal exercises.  I have a 2 1/2 finger separation of my abdominal stomach muscles after all!  After stumbling across as well as I learned that doing the typical exercises--crunches, sit-ups, leg-lifts, etc.--was actually a bad idea.  These sorts of exercises could even make it worse!

What kinds of exercises can I do?  On it gives you a chart with different exercises you can do.  Some of these can even be done all throughout the day!

I am a step-by-step learner, so here are some videos from to help any of you who may have Diastasis Recti  (or would like some core workouts).  

I am going to do these every night before bed.

Here are the three things I am going to do to help my stomach:
1.  Exercise my stomach regularly.
2.  Drink a cup of water when I feel like I want to eat.
3.  Avoid "the machine."

Yes, that is a candy machine currently full of Skittles.  Sweets are my Achilles' Heel.  I really should fill that thing with peanuts or something.

Even though I refer to my stomach as my cottage cheese belly, these three were worth it.  I love being a mommy!

Some more exercises to get you that healthy body you deserve:
Popsicle Stick Workout
Dice Workout