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mind matters Ten Tips to Start Your Year By Laura Bender

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or those of us who have already been working on our health and wellness, keep up the good work! Maybe this year you can add or try some new things. For those who haven’t, how about this, we don’t make resolutions we are just trying to improve our lives. Here are some ideas:

Join a club

Join a health club and take it a step further. Get involved in the classes. I have discovered that many people join clubs only to stop or quit because they feel lost, alone or bored. By joining a class you will have both a consistent schedule of times to workout and you’ll meet new and interesting people. Many classes are available from pilates to spinning. Some clubs have weight lifting classes, other have fitness fusion which combines several different approaches like yogalottis or Zumba. If you are not a joiner, find a friend and enjoy the beautiful outdoors. Plan a specific day and time to meet each week and enjoy local hiking, walking trails and skiing. Remember, that during icy days, being cautious and prepared is key. Need more incentive? Want to get more specific? Invest in a trainer. In three months you will establish a consistent workout that you can use on your own and you should see immediate results.

Eat Smarter

Simple is always best. There are a lot of diet programs out there. The industry was created to play on our insecurities and take our money. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Here is an easy idea. Eat smaller portions and eat often (ever 2-3 hours). Focus on more fruits and veggies. Simple strategy would be to make half of your plate veggies and fruit at lunch and dinner. Drink more water and herbal teas. Give us sugary juices and pop. For those of up who have been adhering to the wellness plan, here are a few ideas: 15

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Mix it up

Try something completely different. We all get used to the same old exercise routine. It becomes familiar and after awhile we get bored and, quite frankly, your body shops changing. Mix it up by adding a dance class. If you don’t have a partner try Zumba, African, Belly Dance, or Nia. Same old weight room routine? Save time and money by hiring a trainer to write you a new workout. You don’t have to commit to several costly sessions and you will walk away with a terrific new workout that you can rotate with your old one.

Try Variety

We have managed our weight, but find ourselves in a dietary rut. Eating the same food for breakfast and lunch it not necessarily the best. Try variety, the body thrives on change. You might be nutritionally depriving the body and not even know it.

Emotional wellness

At the beginning of each month write a sample word above each day of the week. I rotate between these: love, kindness, abundance, giving, joy, nutrition, creativity, etc. I have my calendar handy so that I can see it each day. Setting daily intentions for many of us is thought to help us connect with self and others. And, a great way to establish autonomy at work and play. 2009 is going to be a year full of surprises. Don’t make resolutions, but look for small improvements that you can make and stick with every day. Look for beauty and live in peace. Laura Bender is a Master Fitness Specialist and Elite Personal Trainer. She owns Bodies by Bender. www.bodiesbybender.com

Living Well - Jan/Feb 09  

Living Well - Mind, Body, Soul

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