Basic Movements for Daily Life

Archive for December, 2011

Something Is Wrong With the Plumbing – December 27th, 2011

Something Is Wrong With the Plumbing

Man, for the past few days I’ve just felt ‘off.’  Not sick, just off.  ‘They’ say, read your body, learn the signs.  Okay, makes sense, but sometimes it takes a while to catch on when your body is giving you hell.

I think I’ve heard it and clued in today.

For about two days the stomach has been growling and gurgling, making all sorts of weird sounds, noises and just general odd feelings.  I now have a good idea what it is.  Food.  Not just any food, but mountains of crappy food that has found its way past my lips and into my digestive system.

Now, I’m no dietician, nor have I ever claimed to be one, but eating for the average every day human being should be pretty common sense.  Eating an abundance of chocolate is NOT a good thing.  Combine that with cookies, peanut brittle, and all the other things that go along with the holidays things have not been going well with the plumbing, so to speak.

Today was kind of the start of getting the correct foods back into me.  Never have I looked so forward to the afternoon mix I have of broccoli and cauliflower and some cottage cheese.  It almost seemed to set things straight.

I’m only human and will fall off the ‘good-food’ wagon from time to time.  It’s only natural.  I guess the idea is to recognize it before I’m too out of shape to jump back on…

And then re-read what I wrote about will power.

Bring on 2012.


No Rest for the Wicked – Maybe If They Rested The Wouldn’t be Wicked – December 22nd, 2011

I encourage a good dose of physical activity for people… really, a minimum of three hours a week.  Shut off “The Biggest Loser,” quit making excuses and just get active.  By the way, do you see the irony of inactive people watching “The Biggest Loser?”  (topic for another day).

But one thing I think we can forget is the act of rest.  Really.  We need it.  Gotta have it.  You truly need your rest.

I remember bragging “I only need four hours of sleep.”  Ya, whatever… I was twenty.  Apparently I could get away with it.  A blast of java and I was good to go.  But as I type this out, I wonder how much harm I may have been actually been doing to myself.  Now I need the sleep.  I try to get seven or eight hours a night.  Even then a visit to the Cool Beans Bus wouldn’t be a bad thing, right?  I like coffee.  Tired or not.

Being tired does nothing for you.  You know this… you can’t think straight, you say silly things, get cranky, difficult to be around, it runs down your immune system which makes you vulnerable to illness.

Chances are better you see a tired person getting sick more often than a well-rested person.  Well-rested people get sick too.  It’s just human.  But it wasn’t until a few years ago I truly appreciated my healthier body.

I came down with a pretty good cold, enough for even me to whine about.  I don’t even normally complain when I’m sick, I just deal with it.  It was at this point I realized that I was taking a healthy body for granted.

Now I try not to.

I try to get some decent rest, and by that I mean not only sleep, but rest away from training or practice.   You need to get a break from the weights to let your body recuperate.  It’s nature’s way.  This can be a tough pill to swallow for a new comer to changing their lifestyle.  You’ve found this new passion and you wanna run with it.  Well, take it easy.  Burn out sucks and so do injuries.

Get some rest.  It does a body good.  And the mind, too.

And maybe you won’t be so wicked.

How to Shorten Waiting Lines at the Hospital – December 21st, 2011

How to Shorten Waiting Lines at the Hospital

Let’s face it it’s called a ‘waiting room.’  Honestly, when is the last time you sat in the ‘waiting room’ for less than ten minutes, even if you got there at exactly the time of your appointment?

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I think we have a pretty dandy health care system.  They are doing what they can with what the get.  Although I do think health care and education should be completely free in the world, but that’s a discussion for another day.

I constantly hear the bickering about having to wait, not only in waiting rooms (again, it’s not called a let’s-get-moving-room, and they do provide chairs which just screams ‘you’re gonna be waiting’) but in ERs across North America.  Granted, some of the reasons people are in a waiting room or ER are not entirely preventable or avoided.  But some are.

I maintain if we as a society ate better, moved more and rested well, line ups at ERs and waiting rooms would be shorter and the process of getting in would be quicker.  I don’t think it would be so quick they’d need to remove the chairs from the ‘waiting room,’ but there may be less of them.

Our society has become lethargic, but when we want something we want it now, and that includes health care and a quick fix to health problems.

Three hours a week.  That’s it.  Minimum three hours a week of movement will go a long way to a healthier lifestyle.  Combine that with better eating and BAM, we’re on our way to limiting wait times for the ER and the dreaded ‘waiting room.’

Give it a go.  As I read the other day, the sweat is just your fat cells crying.

Dumb Dumb Dumb – December 20th, 2011

Dumb Dumb Dumb

I heard the dumbest thing on the news today.  The Alberta Provincial government wants to raise taxes on smokes and booze.  I’m not saying it’s a bad thing to hike taxes on those products, I’m saying their logic is dumb.

The theory I heard was it was going to promote a healthier lifestyle.  Maybe.  But I’m thinking probably not.


Because I’m pretty sure giving Albertans a tax credit to go a gym or workout on a regular basis won’t help fill the government’s wallet.

It seems a paradigm shift is in order.  Why tax the bad instead of encourage the good?  People will always smoke and drink.  That has been going since before my grandfather’s grandfather and his grandfather, too.  It will most likely never stop.  So why doesn’t the government take a stand and encourage people to get more active?

Here is how I see it:  if the government decides to give a tax credit to those who participate in physical activity (and pay for it), that person may attend a facility or see someone who will encourage said physical activity.  This increases business for the trainer or facility.  Oh, and if I’m not mistaken, the business pays taxes.  Oh, and perhaps with more business and income coming in, the owner will frequent more shops and stores and spend money.  Which, if I am correct a portion of it makes its way to the local, provincial and federal governments.

So, to me, even though this is a long winded way of getting money into the hands of a government, it’s a win-win.  People get active, hire trainers or whatever the case may be, businesses grow, make more money, spend more money and BAM, in a roundabout sort of way, you have more money flowing into the provincial coffers.

Taxing people is easy.  Physical activity is hard.  So, I guess I know which way it’s going to go.


The Rumour of my Death Was an Exaggeration – But Wanted Dead or Alive

The Rumour of my Death Was an Exaggeration – But Wanted Dead or Alive

Mark Twain said that in 1897 after a journalist was sent to see if Mr. Twain had died.  Well, he didn’t.  He died in 1910 in fact.

Today, Jon Bon Jovi died.  And then he didn’t.  In fact, he posted a picture of himself on social media holding a sign saying he was alive and that Heaven looks an awful lot like New Jersey.

So, this whole “celebrity-is-dead” thing has been going on for well over one hundred years and will likely continue well past our very own deaths.  Gordon Lightfoot died according to Twitter.  Paul McCartney was rumoured to have died in the 1966.  He’s still kickin’, too.

Information and mis-information is all over the place.  I often say, tongue in cheek ‘everything on the internet is true.’  Well, it’s not true and I couldn’t even begin to guess what percentage is actually true and what percentage isn’t.  It’s kind of scary, really.  It’s an open book for anyone to read, edit, create, and spread information that may be accurate or not.

This is where a little research and sourcing out great information can get a little challenging.  There are plenty of great resources on the net for whatever information you are looking for.  But it’s sometimes best, well, almost always best, to get a second opinion on something you are looking for.

And common sense is pretty key, too.

If you are on a recipe site and the cake you are baking asks for a cup of bleach, chances are pretty good it won’t turn out very well no matter how many stars it got as a review.

The same can be said with fitness.  Does the person you are getting the information from have credentials?  Even if they do, not all credentials necessarily mean they know what they are talking about.  It’s important to note what the certification is.  Really, some are better than others.  Does the guy/gal look as though they practice what they preach?  If not, get your information elsewhere.

I cannot express the importance of research, checking, double checking and maybe even triple checking the information you find.

The world is full of information, some right, some wrong, some good, some bad and Wikipedia isn’t the be all end all of information.  It just spreads faster than it did in 1897 or 1966.

Hell, I Went

Today, I had a goal at the gym.  I sometimes do, and I sometimes don’t. Oh sure, I have the long term goal of staying healthy, live longer, be more flexible and strong.  All that, you know, the standard stuff.

But sometimes I don’t have a short term goal, a main goal to accomplish that particular training session.

But today, I did.

And today I didn’t accomplish it.

But today I’m bragging about it.


Because I went.  I had a goal, never reached it, but Hell, I went.

Why would I brag about not reaching my goal and brag about going?

Because now I have something to shoot for.  More of a reason to reach that goal.  Cause I failed (harsh word) to reach what I wanted to do.

And it made me angry.

The goal I have isn’t unreachable.  Many have accomplished it.  So there’s no reason I can’t do it either.

Just gotta try.

Many don’t.

And really, because of that, I guess I didn’t fail.

Hell, I went…..


This is an old post from the Facebook Page:

Originally posted December 12th, 2011

Let me preface this by saying I am not a dietician, but I think we all know what we should and should not eat.  We just don’t want to admit it.  I also scribbled this out in August of 2008 and nothing much has changed. 

Willpower or will power, however you spell it has it as follows:

will power

–noun control of one’s impulses and actions; self-control.

 will·pow·er or will pow·er

n. The strength of will to carry out one’s decisions, wishes, or plans.


noun the trait of resolutely controlling your own behavior [syn: self-control]

I have learned a few things about myself in the last five or six years of lifting weights and doing cardio (when I do it). I have willpower. It’s there. I know it. Otherwise I wouldn’t be in the gym on a regular basis and I wouldn’t be trying to teach others about a healthy lifestyle.  It’s because of my willpower I have taken the steps to become a trainer and hopefully spread the news about healthy living.

However, I suffer when it comes to ‘just one.’ Be it beer, cookies or pizza. I know they won’t help me achieve my goals, and I know ‘just one’ can be the downfall of just about anything.

It’s like uncorking a bottle of shaken champagne.  POW!!! The floodgates get opened.

I have experienced the ‘just one’ syndrome leading to more than ‘just one’ in the last few weeks. “Oh,” I say to myself, “just one Rice Crispie square won’t do me any harm.” Maybe not, but ‘just one’ seems to turn into ‘just one more.’

There’s that bottle of champagne again.

I don’t like that.

Example, someone brought some Rice Crispie squares to work one day.   Oh I knew they weren’t a good choice for me.  So I started with the ‘I’ll just have half of one.’  Boy, it was good.  See what’s coming here?  You know it, that one half turned into TWO whole pieces.  TWO!  I remember the words bouncing around in my head ‘just one more.’  Ya.  Whatever.  It was harder to stop at two than it would have been to not even have started in the first place.

Just walk away.  It would have been that simple.

I noticed I justified my unhealthy choice.  “Well,” I say to myself, “at least I’m not continually beating a path the vending machine.”  Like that makes it any better.  It sure doesn’t make me any better.

So, I’ve identified a challenge and I think I’m going to try and hit it head on. I will try to not have the ‘just one.’ Avoid the ‘just one’ and it will not become ‘just one more’ which inevitably leads to ‘too many.’

That leads to guilt.  I’ve found that guilt feels much worse than just saying ‘no’ in the first place.  In fact, it almost feels triumphant when you conquer the ‘no’ and avoid the ‘just one.’  You can almost hear the horns blaring, the streamers floating down and the crowd cheering as you took one more step toward reaching your goal; a healthy lifestyle.

I was once offered something that was not conducive to a healthy diet. I said to the person, ‘it will not help me achieve my goal.’ The response was basically asking what my goal was. “To not be round” was my response.

What’s that sound? Is it horns, streamers and a crowd of thousands?  Maybe in my head, but dammit, they are there.

Sure, at the office I’ve been looked at as some sort of ‘health nut’ even a freak, but I’m just trying to live healthier. And that begs the question, how does that make me nuts?  I try not to eat junk or at least very little and I’m almost treated as an outsider.  But that is a discussion for another day.

I am aware there will be challenges and I will slip off the wagon, but now I am more conscious of what it is I’m putting in my mouth and make sure the ‘just one’ ends there.

Instead, perhaps I should shift my thinking of the ‘just one more’ phrase.  Why not ‘just one more’ rep, or ‘just one more’ burpee or ‘just one more’ minute on the treadmill.  All that leads to ‘just one more’ pound of fat gone or ‘just one more’ pound of muscle added.

Beats the heck out of ‘just one more’ cookie.

So, I know the willpower is there.  I know I can do it as I’ve seen my body fat cut in half in the last five years to something much healthier than it was half a dozen years ago.

I just need to harness it for good and not evil.

The challenge in that is realizing the evil is short-term joy versus long term gain or, the good.  Ya, that cookie or Rice Crispie is going to taste dynamite.  You know it, I know it.  We just need to realize the long-term goal is what we are after.   You don’t think Dave Draper or Larry Scott or Vince Gironda got to look like they did by eating a cookie and then trying to burn it off. That’s one step forward and two steps back.  Especially if you have ‘just one more.’

What?  You don’t want to be Mr. Universe?  That’s okay, neither do I, but I’ll bet you do want to lose the last ten pounds.

You’re not going to do that with ‘just one more.’

Build the willpower, chant a mantra, avoid the lunchroom.  Do whatever it may take to not have the junk and useless things that won’t help you achieve your goals.

For example, today, I had the pleasure of delivering a steaming warm, fresh box of cinnamon buns to our lunchroom.  Oh, I wanted one.  “Just one.”  But I knew it would to just one more.  Not good.

I did my best to kick that little devil from off my shoulder.  Not going to happen today little red dude.  I’ve got better things to put into my stomach than the oozy goodness of sugar, icing and cinnamon.  Which, by the way, was dripping from each morsel of rolled, baked dough.

So, while other folk (the apparent non-freaks) were gathered in the pit of horror (known as the lunchroom), I wandered to my office and took out my container of broccoli and cauliflower, covered it in some olive oil, balsamic vinegar and some garlic salt and proceeded to devour it.  I followed that with some cottage cheese and a few almonds.  Delish, in fact.

It is also in one’s best interest to surround yourself with like-minded people.  You’ll note the like-minded cinnamon bun folk (the non-freaks) were the pit of horror.  I found myself after my veggie delight hanging with a co-worker who also avoided the plague of dough.  She is trying to maintain a level of health which would have been sabotaged by a bun.

It isn’t easy to do, having the willpower to avoid the pit of horror and all its potential pitfalls, but if you keep solid goals in mind, it can be done.

Not having a cinnamon bun today was a step in the right direction.  I think I likely felt better not eating it, than had I ate it and dealt with the guilt of eating it in the first place.

I tackled it and won.  I had the willpower, the “control of one’s impulses and actions” and made the correct decision.  It won’t happen all the time, but I know for darn sure it didn’t happen this time.