Tuesday, November 26, 2013
Some thoughts for those of you metaphorically cleaning house right now:
1. What patterns are keeping you stuck? How can you adjust your thinking / behavior / strategy to get unstuck?
2. What's been successful and why? Can you apply that same strategy to another area of your life?
3. What have you given up in pursuit of your fitness goals, and what have you gotten while in pursuit of these goals?
4. What do you want to do next and why?
5. Are you focused on the journey or the outcome? How can the journey be more enjoyable and what makes the outcome a richer experience?
If you are choosing to hibernate right now, be deliberate about it. This is pre-season 2014! Leverage that hibernation so that you are ready to leap ahead come January. Embodiment is a life-long commitment and it gets richer as we develop our relationship with ourselves. Be creative, re-invent, make some inspiring changes, but most importantly, allow it to happen organically.
Happy Holiday Season, whatever your style may be!
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Have you ever gone for a night run and suddenly the urban landscape transformed into something much more beautiful? That feeling of cold night air in your lungs and registering light and sound differently unwires the sedentary routines that many of us fall into in the course of our lives.
I have gotten so much from full body strength and conditioning workouts that extend beyond any aesthetic or weight loss goal. The results I am referring to are the benefits of feeling alive, capable and powerful. When we feel that way we respect ourselves and we make good choices for ourselves.
Discipline is good, will power is good, but being on our own team is the most important thing. On-going positive change comes from being our own best friend, our own parent, our own hero. It can be hard to stay in that headspace but with practice it can become the default.
In time, great workouts feed us and then we continue the positive cycle and add the in healthy nutrition, the sleep, recovery time and efficiency that completes the circle. It can become compelling.
Here's a simple way to begin:
Three times a week take a 20 minute walk and do 5 push-ups and 10 step-ups (with good form!) on every park bench you pass. Vary your pace based on landmarks - i.e. - speed walk from the fire hydrant to the lamp post. Duck underneath railings and continue the duck-under zig-zag for the length of the railing. Hold onto handrail and hop up steps one leg at a time. Look for more options as you travel the landscape and PLAY.
If you're more advanced bring a pair of gloves to protect your hands and run the course. Add jumps, bear crawls, crab walks, lunges, split jumps, pull-ups, recline rows, burpees on and off different surfaces, hill runs. Extend the time limit.
Good nutrition means eating whole foods and staying away from processed foods as much as possible.
A simple change that yields quick results is to cut the sugar. Eliminate sugary drinks and sweets, or at least cut down in quantity. If weight loss is a goal, cut meal sizes down by 1/4 to start, reduce snacking (think of them as small meals instead) and see how you feel. Hydrate adequately but not too much!
We will begin posting our Bay-Fit weekly workout challenge each Sunday night along with a sample workout. Stay tuned and stay in touch. Happy Training!!!
Wednesday, August 7, 2013
The wall is the teacher, the lesson and the journey. It's how we get to know ourselves. It begs the question, can we like ourselves in spite of hitting this? In spite of hitting it repeatedly?
In that moment when we are starting at the wall, we can ask: Did I try everything? Did I go all out? Could I have been more thorough? Did I do the best I was capable of given the hand I was dealt (or even, given the hand I created when I knew less than I know now)?
If the answer is yes, rest and regroup. If the answer is no, the game is still on. Go back and fix the missing links. Try it again.and again.and again. but not the same way. Remember the definition of insanity.
Sports, fitness, life, they dovetail into very similar themes. A wall is an opportunity to grow and become bigger than the old version that hit it in the first place. Walls are part of life. Walls cannot take away self-esteem, dignity or drive. Face it and keep on going. Walls can be beautiful.
Monday, April 1, 2013
It's part of my job to stay up-to-date on what's out there in my field and for fun I sometimes choose and to test run combinations of tech training options. The following is a combination that I like:
If I my nutrition goal was weight loss, and I wanted to get into better strength and cardiovascular shape I would use the following low cost programs:
Online nutrition: The Whole30
Gorilla (this is all body weight work, with videos included)
Habit change via payment to a negative charity. StickK.com
Commit to Whole30 for the whole 30 days.
Enroll at StickK.com and get a referee (enlist a friend) - set goals here.
Do the following 6 days a week alternating daily between Programs A and B
Warm-Up x 5 minutes - 10 minutes.
Complete 4 Tabatas with one minute rest between Tabatas
If you are new to fitness keep the intensity low.
Alternate between two exercises per Tabata.
T1. Squats and Jumping Jax
T2. Push-Ups and Hip Bridges
T3. Back Rows and Jogging in Place (high knees)
T4. Abs (Planks) and Supermans
Follow with 20 minutes brisk cardio.
Warm-Up x 5-10 minutes
Complete one Gorilla workout at your fitness level (progress to next workout next time).
Follow with 20 minutes of interval cardio :
either 30 sec quick pace : 1 min normal/easy
30 sec quick pace : 30 sec normal/easy
Adjust the work:rest ratio to meet your conditioning needs.
As with all exercise programs, consult your physician prior to engaging.
Friday, March 29, 2013
Individual exercise and nutrition programming is exactly that: Individual. There is no absolute right way to do it, no matter what the mainstream dictate is. I observe greater degrees of success when the program is designed for the person. There is a logic to our preferences that can be dialed in to bring us to where we want to go.
For those of us who are programmed to operate to swing between extremes: Leverage the extremes so that they serve what we are seeking. If you tend to fall off your training program make sure your program is periodized to include natural breaks or "fallout". If you tend toward extreme nutrition practices incorporate carb cycling or intermittent fasting so that your practice feels familiar but the result will increase your health and wellbeing.
For those of us who are programmed to longterm routine: Leverage that consistency so that it yields the desired result. Change the variables of the routine such that the routine creates change, but keep the basic structure and timing steady. Variables to shift might be: intensity, number of reps, amount weight, style of training, macronutrient ratios, and rest times.
Embodiment is as individual as we are. Physical practice is about working with ourselves to bring our best self forward.
Monday, December 10, 2012
Take this a little broader and apply it to personal relationship to physical practice. Do you do take a generic / mainstreamed attitude to exercise or do you self-style your experience? Are you driving it, or is it driving you? This is different than say, intelligent program design (it matters!). Self-styling is an inspired attitude and a customized approach based on one's individuality.
Outside of a sport or enjoyment context sometimes I think through the cultural push to exercise for health reasons or for aesthetics. These can be considered neutral objectives that can either be externally driven, or owned and self-styled by the individual. External drives tend to be somewhat hollow and lack the sense of calm and relationship with self that personal ownership offers. My sense is that personal ownership leads to confidence, power and passion for the practice.
It strikes me that those who are truly masterful at their practice tend to be excellent at the specific array of techniques / movement patterns that come naturally. They have taken their style or their game to an elite level by playing to their strengths.
Our personal relationship with our own physicality can be one of the most intimate relationships we have. Why not hone our individual styles, get to know our own game and kick some seriously empowered ass!
Monday, October 8, 2012
WE ARE SO PROUD OF YOU!!!
On July 14, 2011 this email arrived at Juno:
As you can see I am very near by. I am looking for a trainer to work with who will get in my face, not take my bullshit, and push me to do what I know is best for my middle age, middle class, white lesbian, 250 pound body. So please tell me the truth, is that you? There's aches and pains and 60 hours a week of work and I have two labradors and a damn elliptical in my garage that I clean every month or so and my heart rate only goes up when I'm in the hot tub every morning. I drive by you all the time and wonder if we were working together would I walk the 8 blocks or drive? My life has become a series of mental negotiations to avoid exercise.
So, are you for fit folks wanting to be fitter or can you take on a struggling ex-athelete trying to figure out how to get some amount of control back in her life?
I feel like I'm writing a personal ad but I'm a little desperate.
Juliet asked me to make the follow-up call and Marj began training at Juno in early August of 2011.
From day one Marj knew she had some demons to face and some work to do BUT she never actually complained. Not once. I have rarely seen such drive and dedication. Marj was ready.
Soon Marj's partner Tracy started training too and they inspired each other in a team effort. They initiated major changes in their nutrition and educated themselves about what foods work the best for them individually. They began working out between training sessions on their own and together. Their dogs didn't know what hit 'em!
Of course there were setbacks. There were the aches and pains that accompany a leap into exercise. There were times when we had to construct workout work-arounds to keep the momentum going despite old injury flare-ups and the body shifts that come with such full commitment to lifestyle change.
They developed mental toughness and self-compassion. They learned about physical self-care, respecting their limits and how to keep going when the going gets...hard. They learned perspective.
And: They took everyone with them. They became vocal about their commitment to health and fitness. Marj participated in a cardio challenge fundraiser and began posting her workouts online. People noticed. Juno noticed.
Their hard work paid off: They are in amazing shape. Their in-session training intensity is high-level. Over 14 months Marj has lost 60lbs and Tracy has lost 40lbs. And they want to take this further. THEY ARE NOT DONE!
They took themselves on a walking tour of Tuscany last week and I got this email from Marj:
The trip is fantastic! We are hikers! I've always wanted to be hikers. People talk to us like we are hikers. Yesterday we hiked 5 miles straight up and down a hill (twice because we took a wrong turn) and it was totally doable. We thank you with every step.
We, at Juno could not be more proud of, impressed with and inspired by the two of you. (Juliet admitted she actually shed tears over how far you have come, and Juliet is...well...badass). This is why we do what we do. THANK YOU.