OHH Fab Fall Cleanse

The seasons are changing and it’s time to turn over a new leaf with One Healthy Hamptons’ new and improved FAB fall cleanse! Commit today to this five-day real-food plan and get ready to welcome the crisp fall season with open arms and tons of energy, confidence, and deliciousness!

leaf7Let’s get back to the basics with whole foods, tasty seasonal recipes, and life-changing wellness tips! This plan provides a guide for a five-day clean eating program to fuel your body with super foods, flush toxins, kick-start healthier habits, and restore energy. It’s not a quick fix, a diet, or a juice fast. With over 20 simple recipes, Kiley, founder of OHH and Nutritionist, created this program with your well-being and busy lifestyle in mind.

Within days of starting the plan, you’ll feel better, lighter, more energized, inspired, balanced, and ready to embrace fall! Best of all, you’ll pay a fraction of the cost of a juice cleanse, one that often results in exhaustion, irritability, slowed metabolism,  interrupted routine, and ironically, post-cleanse weight gain. Skip the sipping and choose real, fresh, delicious seasonal foods!

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Simply email kiley@onehealthyhamptons.com with subject “cleanse” for sign-up instructions. The program cost just $35 and will be sent via email immediately. You’ll receive practical nutrition and wellness advice, a full grocery list, and countless recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, smoothies, and drinks. The structure is simple, flexible, and easy to follow, regardless of your busy lifestyle. Hop on board and feel fab in just days!

MP900227717Once you have purchased the OHH Fabulous Fall Cleanse, you own it and are free to use it at your own convenience, anytime you’d like. As summer winds down and our schedules ramp up, it’s more crucial than ever to put yourself and your health first. This is step one to doing just that.

One Healthy Breakdown: Refresh, renew, and cleanse away the old. Welcome the new!

June’s Tiny Change: Slow Down

This post is part of Kale & Chocolate’s #12tinychanges challenge. Each month, we’re implementing one super small, super doable change…over a year, it really adds up! You can read about it here and share your progress on instagram – tag @kaleandchocolate and @hamptonskiley with the hashtag #12tinychanges for a chance to win some cool prizes!

When was the last time you did…nothing? Can you remember meandering around town without an agenda? Or taking the dog for a walk just because the sun’s out? Or actually stopping to smell the flowers? Really stopping, breathing, sniffing, inhaling the aroma without a care in the world, somewhere to be, a to-do list to check-off, or a photo to post online?

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Doing nothing can be surprisingly difficult…yet incredibly rewarding! So many of us hide in our “busy.” As a society, we love getting as much done in a day as possible. We feel accomplished and clever when we manage to eat our lunch while replying to emails. The reality is that we’ve found ways to multitask just about every moment of every day…which means we’re missing half of this thing called life! Being “busy,” “plugged in,” and “on” isn’t actually healthy, or sustainable. It’s not good for our bodies, our minds, or our relationships. So, let’s change that!

This is usually the part of the #12tinychanges post where we assure you that this tiny change is really easy and totally doable. And while slowing down is doable, (and important!) it will require more from you than some of our past challenges, such as starting the day in a powerful way, getting more sleep, or eating more color. Slowing down requires you to really commit (mentally and emotionally) to not committing. Although it might feel counter-intuitive to “make time” for down time, it’s just as valuable as those bustling, busy hours (maybe even more!)

slowReady to slow down a bit? Here are five ways that you can ease the pace of your life just a little:

  1. Say no.

It’s hard to slow down if our calendars are filled with obligations and meetings, but when we say “no” to things that don’t excite us, we get to say “yes” to ourselves and to better self-care.

This month, let’s (politely) turn down requests or obligations that just don’t feel right. You know when our bodies tell us “no,” but we say “yes” anyway? Listen to your intuition next time! Can you coordinate this or plan that or be here or meet there or brainstorm for…? No. No. and No.

2. Schedule unstructured time into your calendar.

Yes, really. Open your calendar right now, look at today, find a 20-minute window and schedule time to do nothing. When that calendar notification pops up, treat it the same way you’d treat a meeting: step away from your desk and go do nothing.

Cuddle your pet. Lay in your backyard and stare at the sky. Take an aimless walk through the neighborhood. Make yourself a matcha latte and savor it outside. Page through family photos. Meditate. Whatever you do, resist the urge to turn this unstructured time into cleaning, working, stressing, or doing of any kind. Just do nothing and enjoy!

3. Try doing something the “old fashioned” (or “less convenient”) way.

There’s something incredibly satisfying about accomplishing things without technology. What if you explored a new city using an actual, paper map and asking locals for their recommendations? What if you mixed your brownies with a big wooden spoon and a bit of elbow grease instead of relying on the food processor? What about spending the day at a pick-your-own farm or orchard, plucking fruits and vegetables, instead of grabbing them at the store? Or how about free-writing in an actual journal with an actual pen or pencil?

When we choose to put away our phones and use our minds and bodies (instead of smartphone apps or kitchen appliances), we reconnect with life and the world around us.

4. Do one thing at a time.

Maybe you usually listen to podcasts on your daily walk or catch up on email between activities? Whether it’s calling friends from the car when you have a long drive or using meal times to check in on social media, chances are, you’re doing more than one thing at once.

What if you did just one of those things with that time? The walk or the podcast, the email or the soccer game, the meal or Instagram? We’re so used to multitasking, but it’s not always as effective as devoting your time and energy to just one task at a time. In fact, it’s been proven that multitasking results in lower quality work, and it takes us longer to complete a task when we spread our attention too thin.

5. Literally, physically slow down.

Ever noticed yourself pacing around, talking too fast, speeding, or breathing quickly for no reason other than stress, busyness, and habit?

Often, we can change the way we feel emotionally by changing the way we feel physically. We can often calm our minds by taking deep breaths, releasing our shoulders, and choosing to speak, move, drive, and act with intent. Next time you feel stressed, check in with your body and attempt to literally slow everything down. You’ll instantly feel better!

Slowing down can be tricky. It’s easy to fill our schedules or fall into the pattern of multitasking. But when you learn to slow down with purpose, you regain control of every aspect of your life. Remember, a slower life is a healthier, more centered, present, and efficient life. Your hurried body and mind will thank you. Let’s put the brakes on our hurried lives and sloooooow down!

One Healthy Breakdown: here’s to slowing down and feeling up!

May’s Tiny Change: Sit Down to Eat

This post is part of Kale & Chocolate’s #12tinychanges challenge. Each month, we’re implementing one super small, super doable change – over a year, it really adds up! You can read about it here and share your progress on Instagram with the hashtag #12tinychanges for a chance to win some cool prizes! This is a nutritionist-approved change for SO many reasons!

If you’ve tried one of the #12tinychanges already, you know that each change is easy and doable. May’s tiny change is as simple as taking a seat! Here’s why…

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We’re simply going to sit down to eat, as often as possible. Why? It’s really, really important!

We’re not aiming for a tablecloth and two different types of forks, no need for the fancy China.
We’re not trying to make every meal a three-course marathon.
We’re not even shooting for a 100% success rate.

We’re just trying to make rushed, mindless eating the exception instead of the rule.

Who among us hasn’t been there – eating over the sink, picking the kids’ leftovers off their plates, standing in front of the fridge while scrolling through Instagram? (hand raised!) It happens…but it’s really not so good for any of us.

If you need more convincing, here are my top reasons why we should all eat sitting down:

Sitting = Knowing

When we eat on the go, we often eat fast, neglect to chew, and don’t even realize what is happening. Oftentimes, when we indulge in mindless snacking and full meals, we eat more than we need to, faster than we should, and don’t really enjoy it.

Stop Moving, Stop Stress

Shoving food into our mouths isn’t exactly relaxing. Trying to eat while navigating rush hour traffic is not calming (or satisfying!) Eating while we multitask can actually be quite stressful, and stressful situations can lead to the release of cortisol. Excess cortisol can lower metabolism, decrease immunity, and cause gastrointestinal problems. We can avoid all that if we just spend a few extra minutes eating veggie soup at a table instead of drinking it in a mug in the car!

Connecting > Consuming

Dozens of hours go into growing, harvesting, transporting, and preparing the food we eat. Water, sunshine, fossil fuels, and elbow grease make it possible. You put time and effort into preparing each dish, so why rush through the best part: eating it?

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Something that really helps to slow down and connect: Take five deep breaths before eating. It centers me, clears my mind, and turns my attention to the delicious meal in front of me.

Meals Create Community

Of course, we can’t eat every meal surrounded by friends and family, but sharing food is one of the best ways to connect and bond with others. Eating together is an opportunity to decompress and catch up on our lives. We tell stories, laugh, support each other, and make new memories.

When we cook together or prepare family recipes, we reconnect with our past and our heritage. Mom’s famous TLC Cookies don’t have the same calming, healing properties if we shove them down while standing over the counter as if we share the experience, sitting and tuned in.

So how do we find the time to eat sitting down?

Often, it’s as simple as making the commitment and realizing that, yes, we do have the few extra minutes to sit down if we make it a priority. Think of all the energy that goes into cooking food. We want to appreciate our efforts and not just shove it into our mouths without tasting it!

Let’s be honest about another mealtime distraction: messing around on social media or flipping through TV channels! If we can scroll through Instagram, we can sit down and eat that blueberry bliss smoothie bowl or quinoa & black bean salad.

If you really do need a little extra time in your jam-packed day, what if you set your alarm clock 15 minutes earlier? Or do some meal prep on Sundays? With a little bit of foresight, sitting down to eat is possible and rewarding!

One Healthy Breakdown: Sit. Breathe. Eat. Enjoy. It’s a simple change with big payoff.

 

The Ultimate Reminder to SLOWWWW Down!

I recently experienced the ultimate reminder to SLOW DOWN and I’m here to share.

slowHere’s how it went down. Busy Wednesday mid-November. Home for an hour between meetings to eat lunch and get some work done. Starving. Going 100 miles an hour. Cue the incident. No time to cook. Go for a frozen veggie burger. Go to cut two frozen burgers apart with a sharp knife. Stab knife between frozen burgers to separate. Think “bad idea.” Keep going. Cut ring finger. Cue pain and LOTS of blood (will spare further gory details.) Stop in tracks. Cringe. Attend to booboo. Get very nauseous. Get better. Decide to shake it off instead of go to hospital. Live with swollen finger for three months (yes, THREE MONTHS.) Finally go to doctor. Get engagement ring and wedding band sawed off finger. Told severed tendon will not heal without splint. Go to physical therapist. Get splint made. Forced to slow down because everything is slower with a splinted finger.

Curse my own stupidity. Count my blessings. Thankful only a finger. Thankful all limbs working fine. Thankful that recovery is only a month. Thankful for good doctors. Annoyed with self. Regretting going 100 miles an hour. Missing rings desperately. Aggravated that shampooing, cooking, TYPING, holding weights, kettlebells, steering wheel etc. difficult.

See where I’m going with this? If I had just literally taken the extra four seconds (FOUR SECONDS!) to set the gosh darn veggie burgers down and cut them in a safer manner, I would have saved myself hours of nausea, three doctors visits, replacing my wedding and engagement rings with far less-attractive finger splints, hundreds of dollars in medical bills, lots of frustration, and a really silly story to tell.

Point is, we’re all super busy. We’re going, going, going…but, regardless of where it is that we’re going, if we rush, cut corners, and get ahead of ourselves, we’re not living in the moment, we’re not enjoying the ride, and we’re putting ourselves and others at risk of making a silly mistake. Do it right or do it twice and pay the price. I’m paying alright.

This is my reminder to STOP in your tracks. Take a minute to breathe. Really breathe. Allow yourself a break. Reset your speed a bit slower. Enjoy the ride. Embrace the moment. Don’t miss this minute because you’re eager to get to the next. Live in the present. Count your blessings. Hug your loved ones. Be kind. Stay calm. Put the phone down. Practice mindfulness. Do what you do with grace and intention. Work hard. Prepare the meal slowly (and safely.) Taste your food. Chew slowly. Be yourself. Listen to music. Take care of yourself. Find pleasure in everything. Embrace nature. And once again, B R E A T H E. Breathe slowly. Stop every once in a while to check yourself before you wreck yourself. Your to-do list can wait and you’ll need all 10 fingers to be the superhero that you are…trust me!

One Healthy Breakdown: Proceed slowly.

Eat, Drink, & Be Merry!

‘Tis the season for a whole lotta eating, drinking, and all-around merriness!

image(30)‘Tis the season for a whole lotta eating, drinking, and all-around merriness! This isn’t another “how to survive the holidays” guide. We’re talking the holidays people, not jury duty! So what are we to do?! Here’s what: eat, drink, and be merry and mindful! Don’t just “survive,” ENJOY! The holidays come around once a year and it’s time to celebrate! Here are a few helpful holiday tips:

1. Focus on what it’s really about: FAMILY. Aren’t the holidays all about spending time with the ones we love? Sometimes we forget that and before we know it, we’re back at work and school in the blink of an eye. Do the shopping, cooking, or baking together to turn busy work into family time. Unplug from the outside world for a bit and allow yourself to enjoy these moments together.

2. Indulge. If you’re all about those Christmas cookies, enjoy a cookie or two. If you’ve been waiting all year for egg nog, have a cup of the good stuff. We can have it, we just can’t have it all. Pick your must-haves and allow yourself to truly enjoy them. If you deprive yourself of the things you love, well there’s no joy in that, and you’re more likely to overdo it eventually. Just indulge mindfully and you won’t wake up with a Santa belly or food hangover. Just don’t forget the good stuff, aka good old fruits and veggies. Keep your body and mind well fueled so that you’re able to indulge right and feel good doing it. Make sure you have a healthy breakfast to start your day on the right foot. Have a salad before heading to a party and bring your own healthy dish or cocktail to share.

3. Prioritize YOU. Yes, family time is important, but taking care of yourself is crucial to your health and happiness. Although it’s a winter whirlwind out there, don’t sacrifice sleep, self-care, and the things that keep you sane. If you take on too much, you’ll be stressed and exhausted by January 1 and that’s no way to kick off a new year. Instead, focus only on the most important things on the to-do list and make sure that one of them is YOU. Whether you need ten minutes of alone time in the morning to get your act together, an hour to workout, an afternoon pedicure, or a drink with your friend to break up the family time, make it a must and you’ll thank yourself later. Don’t forget to give yourself a gift, because YOU deserve it!

One Healthy Breakdown: Eat the food. Not all the food. Drink the drinks. Not all the drinks. Be very, very merry!

Feeling Fresh & Clean Ending 2014

One engagement, wedding, and honeymoon behind me and I’m ready for a reset, both mentally and physically. The dress fittings have come and gone and life goes on, my friends! Real life is calling and there’s no time like the present. I know you can all relate. If it’s not a wedding, it’s a birthday, a vacation, or another reason to celebrate. There will always be an excuse to sip champagne and eat cake, but it’s about living in moderation and maintaining a healthy body and mind that keeps us stable. Instead of heading into January with holiday bloat and gloat, let’s skip the New Years anticipation and just feel better today. Personally, I feel my best when I’m treating my body and my mind right.

Living a healthy lifestyle is like balancing a scale, the middle point between extremes. Though I didn’t really diet for my wedding, I was definitely hyper-aware of what I put into my body and how I targeted my workouts. While that’s one side of the spectrum, the other was my honeymoon indulgence in all things good and carby; pasta, pizza, wine, dessert, and more wine. While both practices were right for me at the time, (no shame in that!) but I’m excited to find the happy middle that is real life again!

Vintage Balance Scale If you’re in a need of a few small changes, a little reset, and balancing out the scale, join me in the following practices. Let’s do this sans the juice cleanse, starvation, strictness, supplements, or labels. Just some good old fashioned healthy fun to feel good inside and out.

1. Eat clean, lean, and green, whole foods, and indulge mindfully. It’s no surprise that whole foods are the way to go and that fresh fruits and veggies should be at the top of the pyramid. As the seasons shift, our bodies naturally crave more comforting, warming foods. Satisfy these cravings with soups, autumn staples, spiced smoothies, lean protein, whole grains, herbs and spices, and healthy fats. It’s not rocket science and there’s no magic diet involved (thank the lord!) Indulge moderately, chew slowly, and be aware of portion size. Don’t restrict yourselves of your favorite pleasure foods (for me, it’s red wine, nut butter, and dark chocolate) and don’t beat yourself up for indulging, but do avoid processed food and too much of a good thing.

2. Move your body every single day. It’s that simple. I’m all about switching it up, trying new things, and enjoying exercise. To me, a healthy, balanced life includes some grueling workouts that challenge, push, and exhaust as well as less-demanding days to rest, stretch, and recharge. Regardless of what it is, your favorite workouts/classes should be a priority on your calendar. Make it happen, walk more, and treat your body with love, it’s carrying you through life and you won’t get very far without lots of movement.

3. Sleep. Thoughts of our honeymoon are full of amazing memories, sites, and meals as well as physically and emotionally feeling like a  million bucks. No, it wasn’t just because I was on newlywed cloud 9. I slept. A LOT. Sleep is the fuel that charges our bodies to run efficiently and stay healthy, both physically and mentally. 8+ hours – make it happen.

4. Take time for yourself and give yourself permission to RELAX, every single day. Whether you practice daily meditation or not, it’s crucial to take ten minutes a day to breathe, connect with yourself, reflect, refocus, set your intention for the day, do some yoga, and completely relax. Like sleep, this simple practice can make your entire day, week, month, life better all around.

One Healthy Breakdown: It’s really that simple, folks. Let’s commit to feeling fresh and clean heading into 2015!

Mindfulness During the Holidays

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How often have you begun the holiday season with the most exalted expectations, only to stumble into the new year burned-out and disappointed? The secret to making your holidays as enjoyable and stress-free as possible is to take the mindfulness you practice on your yoga mat or meditation cushion and actually apply it in your life from moment to moment. And what better time than those frenzied, emotional weeks at the end of the year? Here are some suggestions:

Live in the moment.

As I’m sure you’ve noticed, most of your stress occurs when you’re worrying about the future or obsessing about the past. Live in the present; your mind naturally settles down and your anxiety dissipates. Easier said than done, of course, especially around the holidays, when your head is filled with back-to-back commitments and an endless list of things to do and buy. You can make a commitment to yourself to stop from time to time, shift your attention from your thinking, and pay mindful attention to your experience right now—the weight of your feet against the floor, your back against the chair, the coming and going of your breath.

Let go of expectations.

The holidays are fraught with promises that life and other people can’t possibly fulfill. Maybe you desperately want to take your family on vacation but discover you can’t afford it. Or you’re looking forward to a big family gathering but your folks get sick and have to cancel at the last-minute. Instead of attaching to the way you think things should be (and causing yourself unnecessary stress), you can choose to stay present and grounded, roll with the changes –and heed the other tips in this list.

Tread softly with the relatives.

Love ‘em or hate ‘em (or a little of both), family can be a major challenge to your peace of mind, especially when everyone’s stressed. Breathe deeply, and resist the temptation to rehash old hurts or expect more love and approval than they can muster (see above). Relish the tender moments, generosity, and togetherness that the holidays tend to evoke.

Be especially kind and gentle with yourself.

If you’re pushing yourself too hard, you need to be the one to notice, back off, and give yourself a little loving. Take a hot bath, do some yoga, get a massage, spend quiet time in nature, meditate, call a close friend. Do what nurtures you, then return to the fray refreshed, reinvigorated, and rebalanced.

Count your blessings.

Researchers agree that the key to a happy life is to appreciate what you have. Dwell on the positive and your mood quickly lifts. Spend five minutes each night, especially during the holiday season, reflecting on the good things that happened to you that day, even if they seem inconsequential. The sky at sunset, the loving look in a baby’s eyes, a gift from a friend, a tasty meal, a funny incident at work. Human minds tend to skew toward the negative to alert us to predators and other threats, so you need to make a special effort to correct the bias.

One Healthy Breakdown: Remember to be mindful, no matter how busy you get. In the end, you’re responsible for your own happiness and peace of mind. No one else can provide it for you, even at the holidays!

*Stephan Bodian is a world-renowned meditation teacher, psychotherapist, and consultant specializing in stress management and positive psychology. He is the author of the Mental Workout programs, Mindfulness Meditation and Freedom from Stress, available inside the Mental Workout app and on www.mentalworkout.com. He has also authored several books, including Meditation For Dummies and Wake Up Now: A Guide to the Journey of Spiritual Awakening, in addition to being the former editor-in-chief of Yoga Journal.

The Art of Managing Stress

If you’re totally relaxed and at peace every second of every day, ignore this post. If you ever feel  stressed and overwhelmed, keep reading. The Wellness Institute at the Southampton Hospital offers a weekly stress management class to discuss and aid the art of relaxation. While stress is a natural reaction, part of our humanity, it can have a negative effect on us both physically and emotionally. Our sense of reasoning is not clear when we’re stressed, we’re not able to put things in perspective, and we often feel physically drained or even experience stress-induced illness. Nowadays, we rarely take the time to rest and rejuvenate. There’s always something to do, 24/7. Some of their suggested relaxation strategies include:

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  • Remember that it is not the goal to rid your life of stress, its learning how to manage stress that is important.
  • The more positive your outlook, the better you will manage stress. Learn to re-frame your stress by thinking about the big picture and prioritizing.
  • Living in the present moment is half the battle. If you’re living in the here and now, you can’t stress out about something next week.
  • Although we no longer celebrate a universal day of rest every Sunday, pick a time and make up for it. Since the world never stops, the hustle and bustle never shuts down, and time does not stand still, we have to create and prioritize the time to rejuvenate. Choose a time each week that is family time or alone time. Put aside all of the latest technology and chill.
  • Learn how to say NO sometimes! It will help you to avoid lots of unnecessary stress.
  • Utilize all five senses (visualization, scents like candles or oils, touch like massage, taste your favorite foods, listen to calming sounds, music, or silence.)
  • LAUGHTER is the best stress buster. Laugh, a lot.
  • Relaxation techniques should be practiced daily in order to master the strategies for when they’re most needed. Just like a muscle, our stress-management skills need to be worked to stay in shape.

One Healthy Breakdown: Destress and decompress for your wellness!

Yoga’s Gift to Me

Young Woman Meditating on the FloorMoms have the hardest job! With five kids of my own, I’m guilty of bellowing “I can’t take another minute of this!” Not so positive, I know… But I have to be honest, I meant it! I meant this and…many other negative, self-defeating thoughts and statements through the years. General stress topped with ‘end-of-day-mommy-exhaustion’ can do that to a person. Am I right or am I right?

Then one day, I heard my daughter shout in an awful, guttural, honestly horrifying way, “I can’t TAKE another MINUTE of THIS!” I couldn’t even try to deny where she got it from, everyone in the house looked right at me. It really is something when we face ourselves in our children isn’t it? The good, the bad and the ugly. Ugh.

In my highly-energized (some may say ‘wound-up,’ I prefer ‘highly energized’) way, I shared this latest exclamation with one of my serene, calm, always-balanced friends (we differ in some ways…) She suggested I join her for a yoga class. Yoga? Not fast enough for me. I spin, I run, I lift, I swim, and I do triathlons. I am fit. Yoga? I don’t think so. Truly the teacher would not want me there. I will squirm, mentally go thru my grocery list, watch everyone else, count how many ladies are wearing LuLu…nah, it won’t be good, it’s not for me.

My friend persisted….she spoke of things like breathing, (duh, I do that!) listening, slowing down, (slow is not usually my style) and sweating (now that’s what I like to hear!) So I went to yoga. And to this day, I have a dysfunctional relationship with yoga, but I did I get one of the biggest life-changing gifts during that yoga class.

My mother always said: “f you have nothing nice to say, say nothing.” In life, that saying has always stayed with me, but there’s more to it. What I learned in that yoga class was the power of positive thoughts. Pay attention, this is actually life-altering. Take it from me, the skeptical mom of five who will try anything to make life flow a teeny, tiny bit smoother.

At the end of class, the teacher had us close our eyes and lay on our backs. She continued to quietly talk about self-kindness and the power of positive thoughts. (I should probably mention the fact that she was going from person to person massaging each of our feet – THAT may have helped!) Anyway, she suggested, when we go home, to hear our negative thoughts and try to replace every negative thought with a positive thought, recite the positive thought aloud, take 3 big inhales and exhales, and then recite the positive thought again.

The payoff? That yoga teacher claimed many; serenity, calm, happiness, hope, gratitude, improved immune system, improved overall mental health, improved concentration, and more! What mom isn’t looking for a little of that? So I tried it. And it worked. Not overnight, it takes time, but it helps. A lot. It’s something I am mindful of everyday, and it works.

While I can become a bit discouraged about the number of times a negative thought still floats through my mind, I’m in awe of my ability to press ‘rewind’ and turn a negative into a positive. I’ve discovered positive behavior follows positive thinking! You know what else? Positive energy attracts positive energy! I’m constantly amazed at how greatly this one exercise has empowered me. Finally, I live a life full of positivity. And the change is actually doable. It’s free, it’s personal, and it’s mind-blowing.

The best part? The other day…my daughter was running across the playground and a little boy bumped into her. She took quite a spill. As I approached her, I braced myself for her response. Perhaps she would cry, want to go home, or even lash out at the other child. Guess what? She slowly got up and while wiping all the sand off her knees, I heard her mumbling “It’s ok, little boy. We are fine. We are strong kids! We are positive! Want to play?” And off they went!

I am inspired by that yoga teacher. She taught me that being fit is about more than just my body. It’s about being strong enough to listen to my thoughts, breath thru them, make a choice to change them, and believe in the power of positivity. It’s a great gift we can give ourselves and our children. Try it for yourself…if I can do it, you can do it!

*Norah Benincasa is the owner of Pedal and Pose Fitness Studio in Concord, MA. She is a certified personal trainer, spin instructor, TRX trainer, Body Pump trainer, more…and mom of five! Norah holds a masters degree in social work and is an expert in all things fitness!

Beat The Mondays

Ever have a serious case of “The Mondays?” The average person doesn’t smile once until after 11:16am on Monday due to those “Monday Blues,” that’s not cool! Here are some tips to get you smiling early, bust “The Mondays,” and make it through the week happy and healthy!

Young Woman Sitting in Front of a Computer and Laughing

  • Get enough sleep. Snooze an extra 10 minutes if you can, it’s Monday and you deserve it.
  • Take 10 deep breaths to relax your mind and body a little.
  • Think of how lucky you are to have a great job or beautiful family, whatever it is you do, feel good about it.
  • SMILE. And even laugh a little.
  • Get to the gym, the earlier the better. Working out boosts mood instantly.
  • Listen to good music on the way to work.
  • Eat an enjoyable, fueling breakfast and pack or make time for a satisfying lunch.
  • Do a good deed for a coworker or friend, and then feel good about it.
  • Wear something new or really comfy, something you love, on Mondays.
  • Get some fresh air.
  • Go for a walk outside – this will get you moving and get your vitamin D in!
  • Start a new book or DVR a show and save it for Monday evening to give you something to look forward to.
  • Call an old friend to catch up tonight.
  • Do something after work every Monday, like take a bath, get a pedicure, or take a class you love.

One Healthy Breakdown: Beat those Mondays all the way to Friday!