Thursday, September 3, 2009

It All Comes Back to Yoga! - Or Life is Yoga, Yoga is Life

Below is a link and a copy of a story I received from The gist of the story is that regular practice of Yoga can assist in mindful eating to maintain a healthy weight. Yoga is so awesome in and of itself, but in transcends into all facets of your life!

Health News

Regular Yoga May Improve Eating Habits

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THURSDAY, Aug. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Practicing yoga regularly may help your eating habits so you can maintain a healthier weight, a new study says.

Researchers at the Seattle-based Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center reported a link between yoga practitioners and "mindful eaters," people who were better aware of their feelings of hunger and fullness and why they ate. These mindful eaters, as opposed to those who ate regardless of hunger or to soothe anxiety or depression, tended to be less likely to be obese, the study found. Results are published in the August issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.

"Mindful eating is a skill that augments the usual approaches to weight loss, such as dieting, counting calories and limiting portion sizes," study leader Alan Kristal, associate head of the Cancer Prevention Program at the Hutchinson Center, said in a news release from the center. "Adding yoga practice to a standard weight-loss program may make it more effective."

The study was based on analysis of a questionnaire about mindful eating habits (such as being distracted by other things while eating or responding to emotional situations with food) and other health- and exercise-related factors that was completed by more than 300 people at Seattle-area yoga, fitness and weight-loss facilities. Though the average weight of the participants was within normal ranges, people who practiced yoga tended to have a noticeably lower body mass index than those who didn't, with the average being 23.1 versus 25.8, respectively.

The findings support earlier research by Kristal that found that regular yoga helped middle-age people gain less weight over a 10-year period than non-yoga practitioners, regardless of other physical activity and eating patterns.

Although about half of the new studies participants also engaged in at least 90 minutes of walking or moderate and strenuous exercise, only regular yoga class participation was linked to mindful eating.

Kristal, himself a yoga enthusiast, said that yoga challenges people to focus and accept their surroundings without judgment, key teachings that might encourage better discipline about eating. "This ability to be calm and observant during physical discomfort teaches how to maintain calm in other challenging situations, such as not eating more even when the food tastes good and not eating when you're not hungry," he said.

Kristal hopes the questionnaire his team developed could have clinical and research applications that would help people understand their eating habits and promote better ones.
More information

The U.S. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine has more about yoga.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Age is "NO EXCUSE"

As we all try to live the life that we have learned through the project, everything goes back to "NO EXCUSES!" We all know that as we age, things may not be as easy as they were when we were 20, but like Chris says in Yoga, "We acknowledge it and move on." In other words, there are challenges that come with aging but we have to work through them and not use them as an Excuse. I am still young, but I am working today in hopes that I will set myself up for a better journey later in life. When I look at the other Project recruits that are a little youth challenged, I am so inspired by what I see them all accomplishing. Below is a perspective I received today in my daily message from Jillian Michaels that I thought had a lot of great insight. Her daily messages are often very good reminders.


Don't Blame Being Overweight on Your Age If you've been blaming your belly fat on the fact that you're growing older, now's the time to stop believing that weight gain is an inevitable part of aging! Yes, as we get older our hormone balance shifts in ways that encourage weight gain. For example, testosterone and DHEA levels decline in men, and women's insulin-regulating hormones become less effective. These changes can decrease muscle mass and energy while increasing belly fat and insulin resistance. But there's no reason we can't stay healthy and keep our hormones balanced as we age. Ongoing research suggests that age-related muscle decline is largely under our control. The more we eat clean, live clean, and work out, the better our hormone balance will be, and the healthier our metabolisms will remain.

I can't tell you how many people just let exercise slide as they get older; then they turn around and blame their lagging metabolism on their hormones. I'll be honest — I don't like to exercise. But the reality is, we have to do it. Your body needs exercise the way it needs oxygen and water. It's crucial to maintain muscle mass as you age: A pound of muscle burns three times more calories than a pound of fat does, and muscles scoop up blood sugar and enhance your body's insulin sensitivity.

As for optimizing your hormone balance, the best way to do it is naturally. Nature has provided us with the cure for a lagging metabolism — we just neglect it! We have amazing whole foods that not only help us balance our hormones but also fight cancer, diabetes, stroke, heart disease, and Alzheimer's. So what do we do? We spray them with pesticides and other chemicals, turning our natural medicine into poison. We have to reclaim these whole foods and fight back against the many ways our hormones are under assault every day. Don't wait until you're blowing out 50 or 60 candles on your birthday cake — fight for that healthier lifestyle now!

Here is a link to her website where you can sign up to recieve her daily messages:

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

This Is How You Celebrate Memorial Day!

I want to send out a thanks to my Wellness Guru and great friend Chris for organizing an amazing Trail Run to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project on Sunday morning. I got to spend an Hour and 45 Minutes running through the woods to help offset the excesses of Holiday Weekend eating and drinking and raise money for a great cause. Check out the link below:

I also got a little knowledge that I wanted to share. Due to the great advances in Health care and field readiness for injuries there is been a decrease in the number of military fatalities which is wonderful! The challenge is that many of these HEROS come home wounded and then have to learn how to live again under much tougher circumstances. We owe all of them so much, the least we can do is try to help them back to the most fulfilling life they can achieve. Thanks to all of the Military men and women who fight for me and my family everyday, thank you to all of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in honor of this Nation. In honor of the Wounded Warrior Project, a special thank you to those who have lost so much, but have come back home. May they feel welcome and supported by all of us!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Long Over Due - Tough Week.....Fun Run!

Well, like many weeks with a busy family and two working parents and one of them traveling (me), getting in the necessary workouts can be a challenge.  This week was especially hard, but I did have some good things happen.  There is also a Trail Run that I am planning on participating in on Sunday which is normally a rest day for me, so it will help make up for some lost time.  

The fun stuff this week happened in Missouri.  A lot of salesmen on the road look for the driving range to practice their swing, or figure out which restaurant and nightclub they want to go to that night, or they sit in their Hotel Room and eat too much food and watch TV or Work.  Although I do wonder which restaurant I am going to go to so that I can eat healthy and I spend a lot of my evening in the Hotel Room working, my new hobby is finding the city's local walking and running trails.  There are some GREAT ones out there and this week in Columbia, Missouri was one of the best.  It is called the MKT Nature and Fitness Trail.  Like many areas, they have taken an old rail road base and made it in to a trail.  This one starts near the University of Missouri and runs 8.9 Miles to Connect with the Katy Trail.  A Trail that runs all the way across the State of Missouri.  Here is a link to their website:

It runs through the woods along a creek that crosses back in forth under the trail and the trial turns to long wooden bridges.

Another really cool part is where they cut the rail road in through the hills.  There are these 20 or 30 feet deep canyons of rock, dirt and trees that shoot up on either side of the trail.

I even had a deer cross the trail just a few yards away from me.  The only down note is that I almost stepped on a Black SNAKE!  I can honestly say that was the fastest my heart has beaten during a run since I lost all my weight last year.  

I also got an opportunity to try out a Kayak while I was in Missouri.  One of my customers has a cabin in Missouri and he let me try out a Kayak.  It was only for a short time, but it was fun and I can see it as a possible exercise opportunity in the future.  

Here is hoping I do not have another week where I miss a run and both Strength workouts EVER again, but I hope I continue to find great places to run when I am on the road!


Friday, March 20, 2009

Revised and Improved

Last August I posted an e-mail that my Aunt Sarah gad sent me that floats around the Internet, and it hit a cord with me. It covers a lot of what the Project is truly about in my opinion. Losing weight and running races and such are all good, but looking at yourself and others through a new set of eyes is what the Project has really been about for me! Recently, I got a slightly varied version of this e-mail and I thought it was worth posting again. I now believe that real wellness comes from so much more than just working out. It is a body, soul and mind wellness that transcends everything we do and every decision we make. So as you go out and make a run, or get ready for your strength training or Yoga class it is all in the right state of mind. This is a step towards lasting Wellness. Something you look forward too or at least that you appreciate the positives enough that it does not feel like a punishment. So, be positive and the e-mail I have copied and pasted below is some ideas on how to stay positive!


1. Take a 10-30 minute walk every day. And while you walk, smile. It is the ultimate anti-depressant.

2. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day. Talk to God about what is going on in your life. Buy a lock if you have to.

3. When you wake up in the morning complete the following statement, 'My purpose is to__________ today. I am thankful for______________'

4. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.

5. Drink green tea and plenty of water. Eat blueberries, wild Alaskan salmon, broccoli , almonds & walnuts.

6. Try to make at least three people smile each day.

7. Don't waste your precious energy on gossip, energy vampires, issues of the past, negative thoughts or things you cannot control.Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.

8. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a college kid with a maxed out charge card.

9. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.

10. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.

11. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

12. You are not so important that you have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

13. Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present.

14. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

15. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.

16. Frame every so-called disaster with these words: 'In five years, will this matter?'

17. Forgive everyone for everything.

18. What other people think of you is none of your business.

19. GOD heals everything - but you have to ask Him.

20. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.

21. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch!!!

22. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.

23. Each night before you go to bed complete the following statements: I am thankful for__________. Today I accomplished_________.

24. Remember that you are too blessed to be stressed.

25. When you are feeling down, start listing your many blessings. You'll be smiling before you know it.

Have a Blessed day!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Healthy Dining Finder

Based on how little conversation there is at our meetings about food choices.......I almost typed that with a straight face! So, seriously I found a link to this cool resource on Au Bon Pain's website called healthy dining finder, and it is AWESOME! Although I know we all agree that eating out all the time is not the ideal way to live the BTWG Project, it is clear that we all need to find a way to make Lemonade out of Lemons. As we look for the best options this is an awesome tool! You put in your zip code, or for the Road Warriors the zip code you are in and the price range you are looking for and it comes back with LOTS of choices. Even healthy things you can have at generally unhealthy places. So, when it is just you against the world you need all the help you can get, check it out and give me your thoughts!


Saturday, February 7, 2009

Ahhhh, Yoga!

So, as the round two Project BTWG group nears the end of the first month and the recovery week starts, I thought we could all use some humor. One of the most enjoyable parts of my fitness journey, outside of the project and the immediate circle of Chris and my Fellow BTWG'ers, is the time Margaret and I have spent with my Aunt Sarah and Uncle Harold. From Yoga sessions & Fitness runs on Football tailgate weekends in Lexington, to being our running partners at the first ever Fallin Family Turkey Trot Thanksgiving Day.
So, on the recommendation of Margaret and I and with a little nudge from Chris, Sarah has added Yoga to her very formidable workout routine. Her routine has always included a lot of running, a admitted Cardio Junkie, and the routine has started to result in some nagging pains! So, this January she started her first formal Yoga class as did her friend a very talented artist and Comic Strip Author, Kenn Minter. Below is his characters take on learning the various positions of Yoga! Did any of you new Yogi's feel that way at your first class with Chris? Enjoy and when you are done be sure to check out Kenn's website via the link below.

Friday, January 16, 2009

From Family Time to Crazy Time

I wanted to take a moment to let you all know that I am still on my Project journey and looking forward to mentoring the next Group of pilots. I took the last two weeks of the year off from work and hardly touched my computer, and the first two weeks back have been INSANE! I will have much more to say when things slow down, but I wanted to let all the "New" test pilots know that I truly enjoyed meeting all of you and seeing those of you that I already know at Eagle Creek for evaluations. I look forward to getting to know all of you a little better. Please let me know if I can provide any assistance or guidance along your journey and I will be glad to help. Best of luck and have a Great Journey as you start the first days of the rest of your life!

When I started my journey one of my big weaknesses was coffee and I still struggle with it, but Green Tea has filled the gap nicely. I know that many of you may struggle with Diet Sodas, below is an article I received today with some great reasons to reduce or eliminate sodas. Enjoy!

Say No to Soda, Yes to Healthy Drinks
Five reasons why soda is bad for you and five healthy drinks better for quenching your thirst
By Dennis Thompson Jr.
Medically reviewed by Pat F. Bass III, MD, MS, MPH

Sodas are sweet, sparkling and tasty — but don't confuse them with a healthy drink. Doctors have discovered a ton of health risks connected with drinking soda pop. Worse, you're robbing yourself of a healthy drink alternative brimming with needed vitamins and minerals every time you chug down a soft drink.

"If you're choosing a soda, chances are you aren't choosing a healthy beverage," says Keri M. Gans, a nutrition consultant in New York City and a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association. There are a number of healthy drink choices you can make instead.

Why Say No to Soda?

Soda is truly worthless to your body. "In my opinion, there's really one major reason to not drink soda," Gans says. "It has absolutely no nutritional value. Soda is filled with sugar and calories and nothing else." Even diet sodas — low to no calories and sugar — don’t have any redeeming virtues, nutritionally. Healthy drinks, on the other hand, have vitamins and minerals the body can use. Even plain water can rehydrate your body without adding extra calories to your diet.

Sugary sodas contribute to obesity and diabetes. Soda is loaded with high-fructose corn syrup, a sweetener that has been linked to obesity. Soda consumption also has been linked to the development of type 2 diabetes, both due to its sugar content and its effects on the body's hormones And diet soda? It may not be any better. At least one study has linked artificial sweeteners, such as those used in diet sodas, to increased appetite, greater difficulty losing weight, and a harder time maintaining weight loss.

Soda damages your teeth. The sugar in soda coats your teeth, combining with bacteria in your mouth to form acid. Both regular and diet soda also contain carbolic acid through carbonation. These acids work to weaken tooth enamel, causing cavities and tooth decay.

Drinking soda can weaken your bones. Most sodas contain phosphorous and caffeine, agents that are believed to contribute to osteoporosis. Experts also worry that people consume soda in place of milk or other healthy drinks, depriving the bones of calcium.

Soda can harm your major organs. Research has demonstrated that increased soft drink consumption may be linked to chronic kidney disease, development of metabolic syndrome (a group of symptoms that add up to increased heart risk), and fatty liver, a chronic liver disease.
Healthy Drink Alternatives

Luckily, there are limitless options when choosing a healthy drink over a soda pop. Some alternatives include:

Water. It is the ultimate healthy drink. "It's free in every sense of the word," Gans says. "It has no calories and it comes straight from your tap."

Fruit juice. Gans urges you not to drink straight fruit juice, which contains a lot of sugar. "Drink some seltzer with a splash of juice for a little flavoring," she says. "Rather than drinking juice, eat a piece of whole fruit. You're also getting the fiber in the fruit."

Milk. This is another essential healthy drink, particularly for kids. "An 8-ounce glass of nonfat milk has 80 calories and nine essential nutrients," Gans says. "You get a lot of bang for your buck."

Tea. Whatever teas you prefer — green, black, herbal — they all have been shown to contain high levels of antioxidants, which are believed to protect the body from damage.

Powdered drink mixes. They contain no tooth-rotting carbonation, and come in sugar-free varieties. They give your sweet tooth a fix without harming your overall nutrition.

And remember that you can always cut up some fresh fruit and pop a little into a tall glass of water for an extra flavor kick. Choosing healthy drinks over soda: Give it a try. Your body will thank you.

Last Updated: 12/29/2008
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