New Year New You: Top Ten Fitness Tips

new-year-s-resolution-take-charge-of-your-health-nowNew Year, New You; right? Well it is January again, and are you wondering if you can really stick with your New Year’s fitness resolutions? If getting in shape, and staying in shape is one of yours, it’s probably not the first time you’ve tried it. I’ve spent a lot of my career studying why fitness programs succeed or fail and developing methods to help people succeed. So, Happy New Year, here are my Top 10 Tips to help you ward off decrepitude.

New Year New You Top Ten Tips

•  Start slowly and go at your own pace. Staying in your comfort zone separates the pain from the gain. You’ll get the most benefit with the lowest risk of injury, especially if you’ve been inactive for some time.

•   Find the right kind of exercise for you. Choose activities you like or at least don’t hate. It doesn’t have to be complicated. It can be as simple as taking a brisk walk.

•   Pick a time of the day that is most convenient for you to exercise.  Try to stick with that schedule. Studies show that people who exercise at the same time every day are more likely to stick with it.

•  Before getting out of bed each day, take a moment to visualize yourself fit. Thinking of yourself as a fit person will help make it happen. Professional athletes do this daily.

•  Keep an exercise log. You’ll get a feeling of accomplishment when you stick to your program and will be able to chart your progress.

  • Wear comfortable clothing and shoes with good support. Cotton is a breathable classic. But check out the super lightweight fabrics like cool-max that wick the sweat from your skin. When buying shoes, don’t feel weird about actually exercising in them in the store before plunking down the big bucks. I can’t tell you how many pairs of sneakers I have thrown against the wall before I learned this.

•   Exercise with a friend or family member. Supporting each other’s efforts helps keep you on track. One of my students loves to go mall walking with her friend in the early morning at speed and then coming back later for some retail therapy.

•   Music is a powerful motivator. Pick music you love that makes you want to move. There are fitness music companies that sell CDs with popular tunes played at specific beats per minute. They’ll tell you what speed works for particular types of exercise.

•   Consider professional guidance, especially if you’ve been inactive.  If you don’t want to join a gym or can’t afford a trainer, consider a beginner-level exercise video by a certified teacher so you’ll see the exercises demonstrated properly.

•   Set short-term, easily attainable goals, such as doing some form of exercise two or three days a week to start.  Change your goal when it becomes too easy.

It’s rare when anyone succeeds at anything right out of the gate. That’s why “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again” is a classic proverb. So if you fall off the wagon one day, just climb back on board the next. And remember you’re not a failure, you’re a success story in progress.

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Holiday Workouts

Holiday WorkoutsJust about now, you may have gotten too busy to think about exercise or what I call “Holiday Workouts” . But with New Year’s resolutions just around the corner it might just make some sense to hedge your bets.

Well, I’d like to remind you to get moving again if you want to “live long and prosper”.

So to make it easy, do these 5 Most Important Holiday Workouts at least a few days a week even if you begin with as little as 5 minutes a day working up to about 30 minutes.

Tip: Plan your workout:

Try to exercise as much as you can at the same time every day.

Have your workout clothes and accessories ready ahead of time so you can grab and take them with you or put on and go!

Holiday Workouts: Aerobic Training No. 1

Feeling sluggish? Believe it or not a daily dose of aerobic exercise can help provide you with more energy and stamina. Aerobics is any activity that uses your large muscle groups like brisk walking, swimming, jogging, biking, climbing  stairs, or low impact cardio dance. Starting out with as little as 5 minutes a day and building up to 30 minutes will help lower your blood pressure, increase your good cholesterol, HDL, improve your lung function, strengthen your heart, burn calories and elevate your mood.

Holiday Workouts: No. 2: Muscle Strength

Flab is one of those things we all really hate. What’s worse than wearing something that will reveal that little wiggle. Studies show that if we do nothing we will steadily increase body fat as we get older. So an inactive 25 year old woman may be at 23% (normal range of %body fat) but if she stays inactive by the time she is in her 60’s she can be as high as 43%.

The good news is this is completely reversible by adding some strength training exercises. And it doesn’t take much: just twice a week for 30 minutes or so.

Make sure you leave 24-48 hours in between for muscles to recover and grow.

Use your own body weight with push-ups (beginners can do them against a wall and modified squats or lunges. Start with a few and build up to 15 reps.

Or use resistance bands or hand and ankle weights. For this, you may need some professional help like purchasing an exercise video with a certified instructor, joining a gym or working with a certified personal trainer. Once you learn a simple routine you can do you can slowly increase the weight as you get stronger.

Tip: Start with 8 reps for each exercise. If you can’t finish the set the weight is too heavy. And if you can do a few more, you need more resistance. The key is to listen to your body!

Holiday Workouts: No. 3: Flexibility training

When was the last time you could touch your toes? Or in the morning when you wake up do you feel stiff?  If this sounds like you then doing a few stretches every day could help you move more freely and even reduce muscle aches and pains.

Try doing  an easy stretch or yoga video or class even once a week can help increase your flexibility.

Holiday Workouts:  No. 4:  Balance training

Because we see in older adults a loss of balance, which results in more falls,” noted Holland.

— You can do this standing in line at the grocery store

— Stand on one leg and see if you can let go of the shopping cart

— Hold for about 10 seconds

 — Also try standing on your tippy-toes and holding for a few seconds

— Balance should be done everyday — all you need is two to three minutes

Holiday Workouts:  No. 5: Core training

We see so many people as they get older avoiding their abs, which results in a bad back,” said Holland. “They’re not really supporting upper torso.”

 — Try a few minutes of abdominal exercises

 — Reverse curl while you’re lying in back and pull your knees into you

 — Hold for five seconds and release

 — Start with 10 reps a day and work your way higher

 — Crunches are key — not full sit-ups — because some people can do more damage than good

 — Keep back on the floor and don’t go all the way up

 — Really concentrate so you can feel you’re abdominal wall contracting

And if you need a little nudge my Holiday Workouts Kit is a Great Buy!

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TAKE CHARGE OF YOUR HEALTH! SHED THOSE HOLIDAY POUNDS!

EASE IN, BECOME MOBILE, GET STRONG, LIVE LONG!

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Fitness Myths: Why We Success or Fail

Fitness MythsFitness Myths: Why We Success or Fail.

Before you make your New Year’s Fitness Resolutions, here’s some food for thought.

Many of today’s fitness programs are all about the quick sell and even quicker results. Many are based on dangerous fitness myths.

Here are 5 fitness myths to steer away from:

Fitness Myths # 1: No Pain No Gain:

It is a popular misconception that only when you feel the pain are you gaining anything from your workout.

The “no pain, no gain” mentality contributes to more injuries and more burnout than any other fitness factor, especially among my age group (baby boomers).

It is wiser to exercise sustainably over a longer term, than to push yourself to the breaking point.

Fitness Myths # 2: A Taskmaster Equals the Best Teacher

Reality Exercise Shows that have recently become popular portray drill-sergeant-style trainers as being the most effective fitness mentors.

While leveraging fear and using intimidation techniques may mean instant short-term fitness results, they’re sending the wrong message about how to get and stay fit for a lifetime.

Attainable short-term goals and positive reinforcement are more likely to create good fitness habits that are sustainable for life.

Fitness Myths #3: Pumping up the Volume Equals Pumping up Your Physique

It seems some fitness instructors think screaming louder and blasting the bass is motivational. It’s time to think again.

While high-decibel workouts might be temporarily motivational, over time these techniques become draining and stressful leading to faster fitness burnout.

Look instead for uplifting music and gentle coaching in your workouts.

Fitness Myths # 4: Fitness Equals a Fight Against Your Body

Sales pitches that encourage “shaving off the pounds” and busting your abs or your butt have solidified the image of fitness as a battle against your body.

Fighting is not a sustainable activity or philosophy. Instead, think of partnering with your body. Meet it where it is at right now and provide the environment and tools to reveal your body’s best potential.

When you take this approach you are setting yourself up for success every step of the way.

Fitness Myths #5: Force Equals Fit

Today’s popular exercise routines promote pounding your body into shape. But ancient movement modalities, such as Dance, Yoga and Tai Chi had it right.

Fitness is not about pumping the most iron or performing the most reps, it is about teaching your body how to move efficiently, using all of your muscles groups, and sustaining these movements over time.

Exercise including strength training should be approached as a gradual lifetime process. This way, exercise becomes a pleasure not a chore.

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Visualize Yourself Fit

visualize yourself fit If you visualize yourself fit, you will help make it happen. As January approaches
we vow to lose weight, get fit, quit smoking, and hope to transform our lives.

So why do we try and fail year after year and why have so many of us given up that resolution nonsense altogether?
I think it’s because we were setting ourselves up to fail instead of succeed.
We push ourselves too hard to do too much too soon to change habits that took half a lifetime to cultivate and expect that’s going to be ok with us and it’s not.
If we want to change long standing habits we need to look at it differently.
We need to see ourselves differently. See yourself thin. Feel what it’s like to be thin. Consider yourself a thin person, a non-smoker, whatever.

World-class athletes live by this. It really works. And it works for everything.

Here are two mind-body techniques they use and you can use right away to help set those resolutions into motion.

Visualization: happens mostly on the right side of the brain, the part that controls emotion, intuition and nonlinear thought.
So if your goal is to lose 10 pounds you visualize yourself 10 pounds thinner maybe by wearing that pair of jeans you have been wanting to get into again.
Don’t just see yourself as having lost the weight. See yourself as a thin person, someone who was always thin and will always be thin.
That mental image can replace the one you now have of yourself and help you transform your behavior on both a conscious and subconscious level.
It can allow you to finally put that desire into permanent action.

Affirmations: By engaging in positive self-talk you can change what you believe about yourself. You can speak to yourself silently or out loud in short phrases that start with
“I am
And don’t be afraid to say you are who you really want to be.
Repeat several times until you are able to clear your mind of anything but that particular affirmation.

Once you see and hear how it feels to be someone who has already reached their goal, you can use the same techniques to set and achieve easy short-term interim goals.
For instance if your goal is to become fit, you can start by visualizing and feeling yourself having exercised today and affirm with “I will exercise 5 minutes today”

As long as you have plausible expectations and don’t say stuff like I’m 6 feet tall when you’re 5’6, you can make amazing changes real.

“I am going to have the best year ever in 2015”. Happy New You”

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It’s Fashion Flash Monday!

Fashion Flash

It’s Fashion Flash Monday! I’m delighted to be hosting our 40+ women’s Fashion Flash this week. We, Fashion Flashers give you the latest, and greatest fashion, beauty, health, and fitness info, tips and deals. Check us out and let us know what you think!

 

 

 

 

 

One of the best way to achieve health goals is to track your progress.  Menopause Makeover.com has free essential planner downloads so you can start the new year with tools that support your success!

 

 

Did you watch the Golden Globes and have a favorite beauty look worn by the celebrities over 40? Check out Fab Over Forty and many of the celebrity beauty looks you can recreate at home

In the winter we have to work hard to keep skin soft and moisturized. A good exfoliator is a must and Fab Over Forty found a great one for the body..

 

 

Elle sparks body image debate with Mindy Kalig’s February 2014 Head Shot for Cover.

 

  

 

BarbaraGruffPositive Aging Expert Barbara Hannah Grufferman thinks we should all be doing this ONE THING every single day for overall fitness. What do you think it is?

 

 

Do you think the fashion police take things too far sometimes? Deborah Boland wants you to weigh in on the latest Carole Middleton fashion controversy.

 

 

 

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You think you know your best colors? Jackie Silver from AgingBackwards.com uncovers some tips that could surprise you.

 

 


 

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Deb of No-Nonsense Beauty Blog compares cell growth factors and Retin A.

Staying on track with your New Year Fitness Resolutions can be challenging.  So, if you need a little help please feel free to use this coupon code FABEXERCISEDVDS and save on any of my exercise videos at www.mirabaiholland.com

 

 

 

 

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It’s Fashion Flash Monday!

Fashion FlashIt’s Fashion Flash Monday and our host today is Jodell from Blackcatplus the go to site for the latest and best in plus size fashions. There are plenty of choices to help you look your best in 2014!

As for the rest of us Fashion Flash bloggers we committed to giving you the most current info, tips and trends on fashion, fitness and beauty for women 40+.

 

FAB-7-PACK-graphic-for-webCheck out my New Year, New You Specials

 

 

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NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS: Ease into the Best Shape of Your Life! By Mirabai Holland, MFA

Now if one of your New Year’s resolutions is to get back into shape and lose those unwanted pounds I’d like to give you a gentle reminder to get moving again if you want to “live long and prosper”. Here are some ideas to get you started and keep you on track.

EASE into the Best Shape of Your Life.

That’s right I said EASE! After all it is only January  it’s never too late to do the right thing by your body. The reason most diets and exercise programs fail is people ask too much of themselves and expect to see results too soon. We all know the story of the tortoise and the hare. Well, this story is not a classic for nothing. A killer diet coupled with a killer workout is a resolution killer. It’ll never work. Over my thirty-year career, having seen hundreds of these types of programs, including my own, fail, I’ve developed a method that works for virtually anyone.

Of course, be sure to check with your doctor before beginning this or any fitness program.

First, weigh in. You don’t need to tell anybody how much you weigh, but you need to know. One pound = 3500 calories. So, to lose a pound you have to either not eat, or exercise off 3500 calories. The right way is to do a combination of both. But start slowly and build up at your own pace. You need to break your goals up into small chewable bites.

Say you want to lose 20 pounds. Break that up into 5-pound increments.

And don’t try to lose 5 pounds in a week or two. The first 5 pounds is the hardest, so give yourself a full six weeks to lose it, while easing into a fitness program. After that you can safely lose about 1 pound a week.

Here’s how it works.

Get a notebook and write down everything you put in your mouth for the first week. Get a calorie book and look up everything you ate every day.  If you’re like most people, you’ll be shocked by how much food that is. Also look at your food labels. For instance, if your ingredients on your tomato sauce don’t look like this, you might want to consider switching brands.

You’ll be surprise how much sugar, saturated fat and just plain gunk you’ll find in unlikely food products like tomato sauce. Eat as much fresh food as you can.

Aerobic exercise carries tremendous health benefits. It also burns calories, boosts your metabolism and keeps you in a positive frame of mind. So, that first week, make it your business to do 10 minutes of aerobic exercise, like brisk walking, every day.

The second week, eat everything you normally eat, but cut your portions in half.

Try to exercise 15 minutes a day. The week you first cut your portions down is usually the toughest. But it gets easier.

By week three you should be looking at the kinds of food you eat and trying to eliminate the empty calories; sugary soft drinks, salty snack foods, fat filled fast food etc. Start consuming smart calories .Try to substitute foods you actually like, foods with fewer calories that fill you up and have some nutritional value.

Try not to eat more than 1500 calories a day.

Gradually build up your aerobic exercise until you’re doing a half hour every day.

After six weeks you will be on a fitness program you can stick with and you’ll probably have lost your first five pounds.

You’ll be eating smarter, feel and look better, be healthier and more equipped to stick with it for the next 5 pounds and the next and the next.

By week twelve you’ll never want to stop. And you won’t.

For more information on Mirabai and her products visit www.mirabaiholland.com

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It’s Fashion Flash Monday!

FASHION FLASH BANNERToday’s Fashion Flash host is Barbara Grufferman from TheBestofEverythingAfter50.

Barbara puts her heart and soul into healthy and positive aging. She lives and breathes it herself. As a matter of fact, she is the author of “The Best of Everything After 50: The Experts’ Guide to Style, Sex, Health, Money and More”
the best-selling health guide for women over 50.

Check out her popular  The Best of Everything After 50″ video series  on the AARP YouTube Channel.

And the rest of us Fashion Flash bloggers give you the best health, fitness, beauty and fashion advice, tips and trends so you can look and feel your best for 2014!

CLICK HERE for my NEW YEAR, NEW YOU EXERCISE DVD  & EQUIPMENT KITS SPECIALS!

For more info on women’s fitness and health info visit  www.mirabaiholland.com

Wishing you a Happy and Healthy New Year.

Yours in health,

Mirabai Holland

 

 

 

 

 

 

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It’s Fashion Flash Monday

Today’s Fashion Flash host is Deb from the No Nonsense Beauty Blog. She’s here sans nonsense on the cutting edge of 40 plus beauty to bring it on home to you. The rest of us Fashion Flash Bloggers have been edge cutting too; and we’ve got everything Fashion, Beauty, Health & Fitness and of course Shopping to show you. So make a cup of tea, take a break from the madness, and click in. Happy Holidays!

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Keep That Fitness Resolution With My Mini Time Saver Workouts by Mirabai Holland ©2012

The number one New Year’s Resolution is “Get fit and lose weight”. The number one reason for not keeping that resolution is “I don’t have time.” You’re not lying to yourself.

Schedules are tight in the morning but you can get a good workout in only ten minutes a day. What maximizes time and works really well is using an exercise routine that splits the body into major muscle groups, exercises one or two muscle groups per day. What really condenses time is doing each exercise slowly about 8 seconds per movement. For instance 8 counts on the lift and 8 counts on the lowering phase of each movement. You need to use enough weight so you can barely perform the last rep. This gives the muscle group enough of a workout to only be done once a week. Can use own body weight, hand weights, ankle weights, cans, or resistance bands.

Monday: Chest and Back:

Chest Press: Chest, Shoulders

Lie on back with knees bent and feet on the floor. With a weight in each hand, at chest push arms straight up toward ceiling, without locking the elbows. 8-15 reps.

One Arm Dumbbell Row: Upper and Middle Back

Stand with left foot forward, right foot back, knees bent as though walking. With weight in right hand, bend forward, hinging from your hips, back flat, supported by your left hand on left thigh. Let your right arm with weight hang down toward the floor. In one smooth motion, keeping abs pulled in, bring the weight up to your hip. 8-15 reps. Repeat with other arm.

Tuesday:  Outer & Inner Thighs

Outer Thigh Leg Lift: Lie on your side, bottom arm extended for support, bottom leg bent, top leg straight. Lift top leg to hip level with foot flexed hold 1-2 seconds and slowly lower. 8-15 reps. Flip on to your other side and repeat.

Inner Thigh Leg Lift:  Lying on your side, bottom arm extended. Cross top leg over and place foot on floor forming a triangle over the bottom straight leg. Lift bottom leg up to hip height if possible. 8-15 reps. Flip on to your other side and repeat.

Wednesday: Arms

Biceps curls: Stand with legs hip width apart, slightly bending knees, a weight in each hand.  Hands with palms facing away from your body curl both arms towards your shoulders and return back to starting position. 8-15 reps.

Triceps: Stand with legs hip width apart, slightly bending knees, a weight in each hand. Bend elbows with palms facing in and extend arms in back of you. 8-15 reps

Thursday Legs & buttocks:

Front Leg Lift: Using a chair or wall for support, stand tall, shoulders square over your hips, with weight on one leg, abdominals contracted. While exhaling, slowly lift other leg straight out not higher than your hip. Hold 2 seconds and lower. Repeat using other leg. (Ankle weights optional.)

Back Leg Lift/Buttocks: Use the same starting position as front thigh lift. While exhaling lift leg straight outbehind you to about knee height without bending forward. Bend heel to the buttocks while foot is flexed and then extend leg and lift as you tighten your buttock. Repeat with other leg. (Ankle weights are optional.)

Friday: Abs

Modified Bicycle Crunch: Abs and Obliques

Lie on you back knees bent, feet on the floor, hands behind your head, elbow pointing outward. In one motion, bring your torso up, elbow pointed toward ceiling. At the same time bring your right leg up to meet it, until your left elbow is about 8 inches from your right knee. Return to starting position: then bring right elbow toward left knee.

Also, before you even get out of bed, there are stretches you can do. Also in the shower or bath a good place to stretch because the warm water helps to warm muscles allowing them to stretch easier. 10-20 reps.

For aerobics-research says you can break it up into 3 ten-minute periods throughout the day and still get the same benefits.

30 minutes a day can reduce you risk for heart attack by 50%. (National Institutes of Health)

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