Living Lite

Katherine's Silver Lining Approach: Use This Time to Whip Yourself into Shape!

March 23, 2020

Yesterday morning I was so tempted to skip exercise. It was hard tearing myself away from reaching out to you. Are you happy with your health and weight? Can I help? Would you like to join me? Since I don't want to go to pot, I exercised! What about you?

There is light - or clouds - at the end of the tunnel. You could come out of today's situation with new, great habits, in better shape, even happier, healthier, and feeling proud of yourself. Or you could end up feeling miserable, with higher blood sugar, blood pressure, cholesterol and body fat. What's it going to be?

I'm trying to take the "silver lining" approach and consider this moment as an opportunity to improve my habits.

Would you like to join me? Organizing your routine, day by day - even hour by hour - is important for introducing calm, relief, improved productivity, health, and even happiness into your life during this stressful time.

The first step to transforming this isolation into a happier, healthier time is creating a schedule with which everyone agrees. Ask yourself and your family members the following questions:

  • What has the normal schedule for everyone been, before isolation began?
  • Which activities does everyone want to include every day?
  • What goals do you want to achieve now, and at the end of isolation?
  • How can you design a schedule at home that includes  1.Exercise/recreation, 2.Work/learning, 3.Socializing, 4.Relaxation/meditation/prayer, and 5.Renewal/sleep

Here is an example of what your schedule may look like. This is a template. You could make yours with more - or less - detail and different activities.

A Family (or Self) Schedule Template (Photo by: Katherine Tallmadge) A Family (or Self) Schedule Template

Example of an hour-by-hour schedule for you and/or each of your family members

Some ideas:

7 am Coffee
7:30 am Exercise: at least 4,000 steps with Family
8:30 am Shower
9:00 am Breakfast with Family
10:00 am Work / Study
11:00 am Short Walk or Play
11:15 am Work / Study
12:30 pm Lunch with Family
1:30 pm Recess for All!
2:30 pm Back to Work / Study
3:30 pm Short Walk or Play
3:45 Back to Work
5:00 Dinner with Family
6:00 Exercise: at least 4,000 steps with Family
7:00 Recreation / Relaxation / Homework
8:00 Recreation / Relaxation / Homework
? Renewal / Bed Time / Sleep

Make up your own schedule. But have one! I'd be happy to help.


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Isolated? Part Two: The Power of Music

March 19, 2020

Poster from the classic Hitchcock movie, (Photo by: Wikipedia.org) Poster from the classic Hitchcock movie, "Rear Window"

As I was (virtually) meeting my clients this week, I realized that, by now, home life could be pretty chaotic if we haven't come up with solutions so we can all stay healthy - and sane.

First, the psychological: Our frame of mind forms the foundation of our responses and our ability to cope. For instance, taking the high road by helping each other as much as possible (instead of playing the blame game). Understanding: We're all in this together! Not just our families, our communities, our schools, sports, businesses, but the world.

Italians really know how to make the best of any situation: I just enjoyed some video clips of quarantined Italians singing joyfully together from their apartment balconies (picture a scene in the classic Hitchcock movie, "Rear Window"). Even an opera singer was serenading her neighbors with an aria. What spirit! I have a vision of my neighbors and I singing from our windows and front stoops. Hmmm... What aria will we bellow out to each other?

I'm serious. Soprano Renée Fleming and the National Institutes of Health teamed up to research the effects of music on the brain. The initiative is called "Sound Health: An NIH-Kennedy Center Partnership." Some initial scientific findings:

  • Music helps brain networks mediate emotion, relieve stress and help treat depression,
  • Musical training can foster the development of a variety of nonmusical skills in children,
  • Music therapy can help childhood cancer patients cope with the stress of treatment,
  • Music may help relieve pain, including its impact on several brain circuits and pathways, and
  • Musical activities benefit the aging brain, including promising applications in people with Parkinson’s disease, stroke, or dementia
    Sound Health: NIH & Kennedy Center Team Up to Explore Music & The Brain. Soprano Renée Fleming, CNN's Sanjay Gupta, NIH Director Francis Collins (Photo by: National Institutes of Health) Sound Health: NIH & Kennedy Center Team Up to Explore Music & The Brain. Soprano Renée Fleming, CNN's Sanjay Gupta, NIH Director Francis Collins

I don't know about you, but I'm CALLING ALL NEIGHBORS!


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Isolated? Part One: Ideas & Products for Home Exercise

March 17, 2020

As I was (virtually) meeting my many isolated clients this week, I realized that chaos could reign if we didn't think fast and do something NOW. One of my biggest worries is that inactivity can take over. Stir crazy, anyone?

Is Jail the Answer? (Photo by: Wikipedia.org) Is Jail the Answer?

Children aren't playing their daily school sports, college students aren't walking to and from their classrooms, adults aren't moving around their offices, businesses are closing down, and virtually no one is going to the gym. What's a quarantined person to do besides finding comfort in a padded cell or imprisoning your family?

I had a eureka moment the other day. Over the past several years, I have invested in some inexpensive exercise gadgets that take up hardly any space, and I'm recommending them to my clients. You can get excellent instruction on how to use these online or from a certified trainer (I'll bet your trainer or physical therapist would be willing to work with you via FaceTime or Skype). You may want to consider these easy-to-use exercise aids:

HealthySport 10" Resistance Band Loops

HealthySport 10 (Photo by: Katherine Tallmadge) HealthySport 10" Resistance Band Loops

TheraBands Professional Non-Latex Elastic Bands Set

TheraBands Professional Non-Latex Elastic Bands Set (Photo by: Katherine Tallmadge) TheraBands Professional Non-Latex Elastic Bands Set

Sunny Health and Fitness Adjustable Twist Stepper

Sunny Health and Fitness Adjustable Twist Stepper (Photo by: Katherine Tallmadge) Sunny Health and Fitness Adjustable Twist Stepper

Phoenix 98107 Duel Action Mini Stepper

Phoenix 98107 Dual Action Mini Stepper (Photo by: Katherine Tallmadge) Phoenix 98107 Dual Action Mini Stepper

Total Gym

Total Gym Models for Home (Photo by: Katherine Tallmadge) Total Gym Models for Home

A yoga mat is great for cushioning for floor exercises.

A Basic Yoga Mat (Photo by: Katherine Tallmadge) A Basic Yoga Mat

 


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