How many times have you said, “My life will be better if…?” My life will be better IF I had more time to workout, or IF I could lose 40 pounds, or IF I could stop feeling tired all the time or IF I could get motivated to start working out again. What is your IF?
Whatever your IF is,
Your life will be better if…you take action in creating your own story.
Here, in the Northern Hemisphere, daylight is fading into the darkest time of year called the Winter Solstice. It is a time of less activity and hibernation but also one of review and renewal.
Our ancestors sat around their campfires and hearths during this time of year and made sense out of the past by telling stories. They shaped and crafted their adventures, and their successes and failures into meaningful tales. They sought to understand and then transform what had happened to them. As they shared their stories, many rewrote and reshaped what they wanted to change.
The New Moon will arrive on Nov 29th. New moons bring in more introspective, solitude and a deep desire to seek out quiet places in nature. They are also the time to plant the seeds of change within YOU. Who are you now at this point in your life and what can you become?
This new moon brings in the opportunity to craft, reshape and then give Voice to the story YOU want to tell to the world. We are the authors, the designers of the stories of our lives.
How can you reshape and rethink YOUR own story?
Take the time to reflect how you want the story of your life to look. Then ask yourself WHO you must become to create that result. You have a choice. Now is the time to be Bold and find the Courage to be who you want to become.
5 actions you can take right now to Design Your Own Story:
1. Start where you are. Everyone has a story and we all are in this together. The world needs more role models and more women who are ready to take charge or their lives and their health. Go to the FitWomenOver40 FB page if you need some inspiration or role models. The one thing I know for sure is that I only have control over ME. And so do you. Start with you. Do it now.
2. Tell someone about it. I want you to tell someone in your real life what idea or goal is that you’ve been procrastinating about, or have a fear about or just simply want to DO. You can tell somebody in your real life but also want to encourage you to come over to our new Fit Women Over 40 Private Facebook group, and introduce yourself (use the hashtag #introduction) and tell us who you are and what you want. Tell us what is the one thing you’re going to do in the next week or month or 3 months or year.
3. Which leads to: What is your One Big Audacious Goal? In the previous step, you told somebody your idea. In this step, you take it even further. Think thru what that really looks like to you. Flesh out the details. Maybe you have to lose 20, 30 40 lbs first, maybe you need to stop eating sugar and junk food and maybe you need support and motivation starting a strength training program. Focus on it. Define it. Shape it, envision it, give it parameters and boundaries. Identify what it’s going to be. Come over to the Fit Women Over 40 Private Facebook group and tell us about your new story. Use the hashtag, #MyOneBigAudaciousGoal.
4. Put a date on it. Tell us when you’re going to do it by and tell that person that you’re telling as well. Tell someone about your goal and put a date on it and then get to work. I want you to come back and report when you’ve done it as well in the Facebook group. Pay particular attention when you’re choosing the thing that you’re going to do. If you’ve been avoiding something difficult and it’s still in your mind, it’s probably a very important issue. It’s probably something that you really should do.
5. Decide that you are good enough. Pay attention particularly to the things that you’ve got a bit of fear about. Stop listening to that little voice in your head that says, “You can’t do this. You’ve tried this before. Who do you think you are? What will my kids, or husband/partner or best friend say? What happens if I fail? How will I be able to make this happen?” All of these little voices made this thing a bigger thing than it needed to be.
Start Today, Start Now.
Let me tell you my story:
I started Fit Women Over 40 back in 2007 because I wanted to read about and be inspired by women over 40 who had muscles and who were using high intensity strength training as their fitness regime. Well as many of you know who have been following our Facebook page for years I managed to find hundreds if not thousands of Fit Women Over 40. Their ages range from almost 40 to 50 to 70 to 90 something. I’ve even had many under 40 out of shape women ask if they could join our “tribe”. Yes of course you can. Our wisdom and experience as “older” women is valued and listened to in so many ways now. I find that women who are doing amazing things love to simply show what they’ve accomplished and I’m proud to have built a special place for them to stand on their own stage and tell show us what they did and how they did it.
Start where you are. Everyone has a story and we all are in this together. The world needs more role models and more women who are ready to take charge or their lives and their health. If that’s one thing I know for sure, is that I only have control over ME. And so do you. Start with you. Do it now.
I really do look forward to seeing new stories we can create as a result of this email. Also, I encourage you to contact me at deb[at]fitwomenover40.com or leave a comment on the article page at or simply come join our FB group and share your story there with us. I look forward to celebrating your stories and your goals and maybe helping out in any way that I can.
Thanks for listening, I look forward to hearing from you all and being part of your incredible fitness journeys.
Are you sure that you are getting everything you can out of your core routine? With all of the new developments in core training, it’s difficult to keep up with the latest and most effective tools and techniques. Though the core has become a mainstream concept, most exercisers have a clouded view of what exactly the core consists of, its importance and what the best ways are to activate it.
The core includes the following muscles: Transverse Abdominis, Rectus Abdominis, Multifidus, External Obliques, Internal Obliques, Quadratus Lumborum and Erector Spinae. It provides a stable platform which launches all of our movement by stabilizing the spine. The core generates the rotational forces needed for many athletic movements including throwing, swinging, striking and twisting. It acts to resist or neutralize external forces such as gravity, contact or momentum. We are only as strong as our core. A weak core limits our strength capacity.
Four Tools to add to your Core Training Routine
TRX Suspension Trainer
The TRX® is one of the most innovative additions to core training in recent years. It’s a non-elastic, adjustable harness constructed of industrial-strength, nylon webbing which uses bodyweight as the sole source of variable resistance. The TRX allows for hundreds of exercises that can accommodate all fitness levels. It integrates the core’s postural, stabilizer and neutralizer components in all of its exercises and the addition of the suspended planks, crunches and oblique capabilities make it one of the most effective tools on the market.
Ex Navy Seal, Randy Hetrick of Fitness Anywhere, in San Francisco’s Russian Hill developed his prototype for his TRX Suspension Trainer out of necessity. As a special ops squadron commander, he needed a way to keep his team in world-class shape without having access to world-class gyms. So he bought a $49 sewing machine & using some parachute webbing and began stitching away. The rest is history. Since hitting the market in 2005, the portable straps have recorded more than $20 million in sales. TRX training kit Fitness Anywhere has been ranked by Outside Magazine as one of the top 30 places to work in the United States this year.
The stability ball creates an unstable environment that requires more work from the core. Simple yet demanding, the stability ball can be used to add challenge to many exercises and modify others.
Most modern heavy balls are constructed of a textured rubber that is mad to bounce. Heavy balls are the perfect exercise tool when training the core to control external forces, to stabilize the body while applying internal forces, and when working at higher speeds.
Balance devices come in all shapes and sizes: wobble boards, balance discs, Bosu balls, Bongo boards and foam balance surfaces. They all destabilize the surface using a base of support in one way or another, making the core more responsive. A word of caution: Always evaluate possible danger versus potential benefit before attempting any exercise that destabilizes your base of support.
Danielle’s fabulous story of courage and transformation….
“I gained weight after being in an abusive marriage. .I turned to food 4 comfort…I went to the doctor& they said I was morbidly obese & knew I had to take my life back for my kids..I had 2 little ones..got divorced & lost the weight..went from size 18 to a zero & have kept it off for 16 yrs..I am a fitness instructor/ personal trainer & nutritionist so I can help change people lives..I love what I do..I am a grandma & everyone thinks I am her mom instead..
Handstands, hand walking, and pressing to a handstand are excellent exercises to developing your athletic potential. Even my Mom remembers doing handstands & cartwheels as a kid, yet today hand balancing seems to have fallen out of favor.
Of course, we think we grow out of doing such movements as we get older. I have a yoga friend who comes to my house, kicks off her shoes and does a handstand against my wall just to get the kinks out after a long day. She is so effortless. I decided I needed to be able to do that. Something about being upside down appeals to me. They say that the handstand is the first step to developing a catlike capacity for landing on your feet. Oh boy, I can’t wait!
Being upside down gives you a whole new perspective to a brand new world. Being upside down is a whole other world for your mind and body to comprehend. We spend roughly two thirds of our life upright and one third in lying down. When upside down most of us lose our breath, orientation, and composure. Having the ability to land effectively on your feet after tripping versus knocking your teeth out can be a result of mastering these movements. I had a near catastrophic fall happen just the other day. I slipped on the top of some wet stairs and I went flying down 4 steps to land gracefully and without injury. I attribute that excellent landing to a bit of luck but mostly to the balance and coordination I have gained by developing my core strength and agility training.
Increased coordination, accuracy, agility, and balance are all developed through the hand walking and hand pressing movements. Full body movements such as hand balancing & presses improve balance and increase shoulder strength, but they also improve proprioception and core strength in ways that other exercises cannot. Proprioception (pronounced/ PRO-pree-o-SEP-shin), from Latin proprius, meaning “one’s own” and perception, is the sense of the relative position of neighboring parts of the body. In other words, when you are up side down you get a whole new view of the world and so does your brain, which thrives on new stimulus.
If you just starting out & you are afraid of falling over, start by practicing up against a wall and slowly move up the wall backwards. This is always a good a idea to start with a spotter but in time you’ll get more confident on your own.
Once you are out in the open on a grassy field, practice falling over using a tuck and roll. Most of this skill is about visualizing and having confidence. If you are afraid and think you will fall, then it is more likely that you will. I have found that like any new skill, practicing a little bit every day is what will make the difference.
The number one reason for failure in losing body fat is the lack of clearly defined, written goals.
Here are the steps to achieving your fitness goals:
STEP 1. Set Inspiring, Detailed & Specific Goals
Don’t say things like I want to lose weight and have more energy, that is not clear, detailed or specific. A better way to talk to your sub conscious brain is to say something like: By March 1st, I want to weigh 130lbs, with 18% Body Fat, and be wearing size 8 clothes. My Current waist size is 36 inches, and My GOAL is 28 inches. See the difference? Those are very specific detailed and attainable goals that you can now write down and measure by tracking your progress as you’ll see in Step 2.
Step 2. Set BIG Measurable Goals
Really look at some BIG goal that seems very far from where you are at the present moment. For instance, I said to myself, I haven’t weighed 130 lbs since I was 30, so it’d be a Big Deal for me to have that as my goal today. So, Yes its scarey, BUT I will look and feel totally different and people will SEE me differently, WHEN I have achieved my big scarey goal. This is Way outside my comfort zone of what I’ve thought I could do, but now I’m gonna do it & succeed, cause its time! I can See the Picture of my New Body in My Mind, and I will Visualize it Everyday…!
Then make sure you measure it everyday. Write down your goals somewhere that you can track your progress. So I might say, on my scale I want to weigh 130 lbs, but by measuring with the Body Fat calipers I want to get down to 17% Body Fat.
Step 3. Set Realistic Deadlines
30 lbs lost by May 1st. So 4 months (16 weeks) from now, that’s 8 lbs per month, or 1.9 lbs/week. In terms of body fat, that translates to about a half a percent per week.
Step 4. Daily goals & habits to do every day repeatedly
You develop good habits by setting daily action goals and working on them repeatedly until they become as routine as brushing your teeth or taking a shower. Ninety-nine percent of the actions you take every day are habits. Write out a list of daily goals, to-do’s and habits you want to develop habits like eating small, frequent meals, cutting down on sugar, getting up early, making your meals in advance for each day and so on.
The next time you feel a craving, you’re tempted, discouraged, unmotivated or you feel like skipping a workout, focus on your daily goals, not on the huge amount of work that is ahead of you. Tell yourself, “All I have is today. All I have is this moment, this workout, this meal, the next 30 minutes, the next hour. If I just do what I know I must do now, then I know I’ll reach my ultimate goal eventually.” Concentrate on the task at hand in this moment. As the Zen masters of Japan remind us: “Be here now.” The point of power is always in the present moment.
Step 5. Write out an extensive goal list in the form of affirmations
Always use I AM or I HAVE. Write them in the present tense. I AM 30 lbs leaner. I AM 130 lbs of solid muscle. Always use positive affirmations, never negative. Never say “I’ll never see my abs again”, instead say “I HAVE a flat toned stomach. I AM getting leaner every day. I like the way I look. Whatever it takes, I’ll do it. I like eating healthy foods. I love working out. Training early in the morning is exhilarating.
Step 6. Read your affirmations (your goal list) at least twice a day and always keep your goals “in front of you” and “on your mind.”
Psychologists have proven that repetition is an effective way to penetrate and program the subconscious mind. Fortune 500 companies spend millions of advertising dollars every year based on this fact. Napoleon Hill, author of Think and Grow Rich and The Law of Success, said, “All thoughts which have been emotionalized and mixed with faith begin immediately to translate themselves into their physical equivalent.”
As you read your affirmations, mentally visualize them as already achieved. Visualization means making mental pictures or images – it’s thinking without words. The brain thinks in pictures. I’ve also put photos up of myself to help me through this visualization, the photos make it very real and I can see them everyday.
Step 7. Share your Goals with Everyone.
Your Friends & Family, your Workout Partners share your goals with everyone so you can feel good about what you’ve achieved and you can stay motivated by calling someone up to help you get to the gym or give you a high five for doing another exhausting workout. You’ll be amazed at how great a little bit of praise can help you through day.
Just to give you some motivation, Here are My GOALS:
1. I AM dramatically Changing my Outer Packaging, by being 17% body fat and 130 lbs, by May 1st.
2. My motivational positive affirmations are: “I HAVE a flat toned stomach. I AM getting leaner every day. I LOVE the way I look & how I FEEL. I’ll DO whatever it takes. I LOVE eating healthy foods. I love working out & training early in the morning is exhilarating and really starts my day off right. I feel healthy & have lots of energy.
3. I AM sharing my written goals, my workouts and my daily experiences with My Team.
4. I AM thinking constantly about My Goals & Being Constantly Mindful of what I AM accomplishing. I AM visualizing and seeing my goals photos everyday.
So, Before you eat your next meal or start your next workout,
THE MOST POWERFUL ACTION you NEED to do right now to achieve your ultimate fitness goals is to WRITE DOWN YOUR FITNESS GOALS, – TO DO IT NOW!
Working out on an empty stomach can boost your overall health and fitness.
Simply skip breakfast and exercise first thing in the morning and then have a protein recovery meal 30 minutes after your workout. Whether you choose to exercise on an empty stomach or not, your post exercise meal is crucial to stop the catabolic process in your muscle and shift the process toward repair and growth. An example of a catabolic process is knowing that your muscles actually endure a break down phase because of hormones released during each workout, and that you have the ability to counteract this process by consuming high-quality nutrient sources before, or after your exercise sessions.
If you cannot exercise in a fasted state due to fatigue, or simply opt not to for some other reason, you can also consume whey protein before exercise. It’s an excellent breakfast choice. A 2010 study published in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports & Exercisedemonstrated that consuming whey protein 30 minutes before resistance training can boost your body’s metabolism for as much as 24 hours after your workout.
Certain amino acids, such as leucine found in high-quality whey protein activate certain cellular mechanisms which promote muscle protein synthesis, boost thyroid, and also protect against declining testosterone levels after exercise. They have also have been found to improve performance in high intensity exercise.
Leucine helps you lose weight and builds muscle when dieting
Leucine triggers muscle growth. Leucine is an essential amino acid, which simply means our bodies cannot produce it and we must get it from dietary sources. Researchers have known about leucine for decades, but exciting new research has shed a new and broader light on this important health-promoting amino acid. Much of protein’s benefits may be attributable to leucine due to its ability to stimulate protein synthesis, help turn on the body’s switch to build muscle and spare muscle when dieting.
Whether you’re interested in building muscle or preventing muscle loss that normally occurs during dieting and aging, stimulating protein synthesis is absolutely key. Most people know that consuming protein induces an increase in muscle protein synthesis, which is why protein supplements are popular to consume after exercise.
A large number of studies have shown that high protein diets help spare muscle loss during dieting and weight loss. Researchers at the University of Illinois conducted studies that examined weight loss diets containing 10 grams of leucine per day and 125 grams total of protein per day.The groups consuming high leucine diets had greater weight loss, greater fat loss and better preservation of lean body mass. In these studies, the high leucine diets also resulted in better glucose control.
The best food sources of leucine include any proteins from animals that naturally contain all the essential amino acids. The protein source with the highest leucine content is whey, which contains about 10% leucine or 10 grams per 100 grams of protein. If you drink a whey protein shake that has about 25 grams of protein, you would get about 2.5 grams of naturally occurring leucine.
Dr. Mercola Miracle Whey Protein Powder (Chocolate)
Eating too many carbs in relation to protein and fat is a big mistake
Scientists have found that as you age, the ratio between protein and carbohydrates is critically important. Research shows that a high-protein/high-fat/low-carbohydrate diet is most effective both for muscle building and weight loss. In order to build muscle, you clearly need calories, but there’s compelling evidence showing that calories from fat are far better than calories from carbohydrates.
To maximize the benefits of exercise, you’ll want to avoid fructose and other sugar drinks, unless you are engaged in intensive and prolonged cardio exercises that will allow you to burn these sugars and not store them as fat. Most casual exercisers and those seeking to mostly improve body composition and optimize health and fitness need to stop using energy drinks, sports drinks, like Gatorade and most energy bars that contain fructose and even “healthy” drinks like vitamin water.
These fructose laden drinks sabotage your exercise benefits by tricking your body into gaining weight by turning off your body’s appetite-control system. It’s also important to realize that consuming fructose, including that from fruit juices, within two hours of your workout (before or after) will also decimate your natural human growth hormone (HGH) production.
If you are doing high-intensity interval training, such as CrossFit, a major benefit of such exercise is an increase in your HGH, HGH is also known as “the fitness hormone,” and some athletes pay a lot of money for HGH injections. But the combination of eliminating fructose and doing high-intensity interval training while fasting is a natural and the preferred way to optimize your HGH.
Dr. Mercola Miracle Whey Protein Powder (Chocolate)