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Author: Coach Sid

Hiding the Damage or Getting at the Root Cause?

Hiding the Damage or Getting at the Root Cause?

Have you ever watched someone skillfully apply makeup? I’m no stranger to applying makeup, but watching someone who really knows what they’re doing is quite impressive. It truly is an art form. 

The cosmetics industry has all kinds of tricks up their sleeve so that even their less talented customers, like myself, can look healthier. If someone has circles under their eyes because they haven’t been sleeping, it won’t be as noticeable once they apply some yellow-tinted foundation to offset the blue. If someone is looking pale because they are feeling seasick, some blush and bronzer can give them a healthier looking glow in a matter of minutes. 

While these things can help you look healthier, they don’t actually make you healthier. Putting concealer on doesn’t make us alert any more than putting blush or bronzer on reduces our nausea. Of course, I certainly understand wanting to look nice, and I use these products. However, taking steps to improve your health often has a nice side effect: we look better too.

If you’re ready to improve your health, but aren’t sure where to start, I recommend reaching out to me or another health coach. We can help guide you along your journey to more good days. 

Thanks for reading. I hope you have a safe and healthy month!

It’s Not Too Late

It’s Not Too Late

Okay, I dropped the ball in March. Obviously, this month’s posting is late—we’re already more than halfway through the month of April. Even though it’s late, I’ve decided that it’s better to post now than to skip the month entirely. I often find it’s usually not too late to do the right thing- whether it’s keeping a commitment to write a blog every month, apologizing to someone, or getting started with a fitness program. 

One of the things I often hear is some version of “It’s too late to start a fitness program.” While being active since childhood would be ideal, the reality is, many of us haven’t. You may have taken years or decades off from any kind of physical activity or exercise program. You may never have had an exercise program in your entire life. Regardless of how active you have or haven’t been, it’s not too late. I’ve worked with many individuals who began exercising for the first time in their 70’s and 80’s. Studies even show that 90-year-olds can make muscle!

I realize that sometimes we tell ourselves it’s too late because we feel intimidated. Fear is real, and it’s okay to feel afraid. If you’re hesitant to get started, I advise you to reach out to me or another fitness professional. We can guide you so that you can enjoy more good days.

Thanks for reading! I hope you have a safe and healthy month.  

Building Upon The Strength You Already Have

Building Upon The Strength You Already Have

Have you ever made a purchase that you later regretted? I once splurged for a very fancy purse that was on a closeout sale. It was a gorgeous, spacious bag that had a soft leather exterior, silky interior lining, plenty of pockets for organization, a special chain to keep keys accessible, and shiny leather hardware. The problem was, the bag by itself was probably three to five pounds. By the time I added my extra pair of shoes, water bottle, wallet, phone, snack, lotion, book, and whatever else I was hauling that day, it probably weighed closer to ten. At the time, I wasn’t doing any kind of strength training and I thought that it was much too heavy for me. Hauling that heavy bag around all day was quite the challenge at first, but then it got easier. I got stronger.

I tell you this story not because I recommend purchasing a heavy handbag and filling it to the brim; I tell you this story because we often underestimate our strength. Only by challenging ourselves in a safe manner can we continue to get stronger. If you regularly carry around a 8lb purse, grandkid, pet, or bag of groceries, lifting a 3lb weight at the gym probably isn’t challenging enough for you. If you need some help challenging yourself, I encourage you to reach out to myself or another fitness professional. 

Thanks for reading. I hope you have a safe and healthy month. 

Are You Prepared?

Are You Prepared?

Right now we are in the midst of a winter weather advisory. While our friends in other parts of the world may laugh, a couple of inches of snow, sleet, and ice is a big deal here. Many of us are terrified at the prospect of even stepping outside our homes. Why is it that in some places people are able to handle regular blizzards while people in other places freak out at the mere mention of snow in the forecast?

We tend to be pretty good at preparing for what we regularly encounter like physical activity or weather. If you live in an area where it snows frequently, you and your neighbors have probably developed systems to help keep you safe – just like you have likely maintained your ability to use stairs with relative ease if you live in a house that has them.

Being prepared for every situation probably isn’t realistic. As you know, time, energy, and resources are limited, which is why investing in how to safely navigate a winter storm in a location that infrequently gets snow isn’t a priority for most of those people. However, it is important to prepare for things we encounter often. Even if you don’t have stairs in your home, they are common enough that  being able to use them will make your life easier. 

Whether it is stairs, getting out of a low chair, or something else that you often struggle with, I encourage you to get some help. With a proper strategy and training, you may be able to overcome these obstacles so that you can have more good days.  

Thanks for reading. I hope you have a safe and healthy month.

Natural Abilities or Learned Skills

Natural Abilities or Learned Skills

I once took an introductory art class with an excellent teacher. In addition to instruction and practicing different techniques, we would create larger projects. I remember being in awe of many classmates when I saw their creations for the first time. Even though the class had just started, it was obvious that some of them were extremely talented. However – more impressive still – all our art projects improved throughout the year. We all developed talent.   

I think we can all agree that some people are naturally talented in certain areas. What we tend to forget is — even if we aren’t naturally talented — we can develop skills.  Developing skills takes practice, and often needs quality coaching. Of course, time is limited, so we need to prioritize which skills we want to develop. 

It has been my experience that spending time and energy to become more fit, strong, coordinated, and flexible is a great investment.  Developing these skills helps us to move through life with more ease so we can continue to do the things we enjoy. If you aren’t naturally talented in these areas, I encourage you to reach out to me or another fitness professional for guidance and help. 

Thanks for reading. I hope you have a safe and healthy week. 

It’s the Little Things

It’s the Little Things

Have you ever had one of those days when things did not go the way you hoped? The first thing that went sideways may have been disappointing, but by the 11th you found yourself needing to take some time to recover. Unfortunately, I found myself in such a predicament recently. Ironically, each situation that occurred that day—had they occurred on separate occasions—probably wouldn’t have fazed me. It was the combination of all these relatively minor things that had a larger impact. Little things can add up. 

When it comes to our health we sometimes get caught up in this idea that we need to do something huge in order to have any kind of impact. We forget that little things can add up. You may be surprised by how much a bunch of little things like the following can improve your health: take a ten minute walk in the morning, skip dessert, go to bed ten minutes earlier, and focus on your breathing for five minutes.  

Just because I call them little things, doesn’t mean they’re easy. Old habits can be hard to break and new habits can be hard to make. If you need some support, please feel free to reach out to me or another health coach.

Thanks for reading. I hope you have a safe and healthy month.      

You Get One Body

You Get One Body

Have you ever gone into a dollar store and been amazed by all the things you can purchase for only a dollar? A while back I had some people over for a dinner party, and I visited the local dollar store in hopes of finding some decorations. On my way to find the decorations, I walked past a package of 40 paper plates, a package of 48 plastic utensils, and a package of 48 plastic cups—all a dollar each. By spending less than five dollars, I could use dinnerware that could be thrown away at the end of the night instead of having to clean it.  I didn’t end up using the single-use items, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t tempted. 

Because we live in a land of abundance, taking careful care of our possessions is no longer a priority for most people. It seems like it is more common now to replace or even upgrade something that is broken rather than trying to get it fixed. When was the last time you repaired your shoes, patched a hole in a garment, or glued a broken vase back together?  This makes sense for a lot of people, and I don’t always repair my things either.

With this carefree attitude, it can be easy to forget that we get one body. Our bodies are complex and have a remarkable ability to heal themselves. However, in order to function properly, we must take care of them. We need to feed them nourishing food, give them proper rest, and exercise them. If you’re having trouble making these choices to care for your body, don’t be afraid to reach out to another health coach or me. 

Thanks for reading. I hope you have a safe and healthy month.

Achieving the “Impossible”

Achieving the “Impossible”

If you have been following my blog for some time, you probably already know that I played soccer. I started playing in preschool. At that age – despite our coach’s advice – most of us thought that swarming the ball at once was proper strategy. It was chaos. Therefore, I can’t remember how or when I became defender, but I played that position for years.

Over the years I became comfortable in that role. I learned how to loft the ball across the field to our forwards. I learned what offsides was and how to move towards the opposing team’s goal to make it harder for them to score against us. I learned how to sprint back when an opposing team’s forwards got through so our goalie wouldn’t have to face them alone. Mainly, I liked that there wasn’t any expectation for me to score a goal – something I was convinced I couldn’t do.

Then, one day my coach told me to go in as a forward. It was during half-time of a game, and my team was winning. When I looked quizzically at my coach, he smiled and told me I got this. I remember running onto the center of the field feeling very odd. What was I doing up here? I was a defender. I guarded our goal. I didn’t score goals. I surely couldn’t score a goal. Until…I did! I scored my first goal, and it was exhilarating. I’d like to say it was the first of many goals, but because soccer doesn’t have a ton of goals in general, it was the first of some goals 🙂

Looking back, I think the idea that I couldn’t score a goal was ridiculous. Regardless of our position, my team practiced all the drills together–including shooting drills. I had scored numerous goals during these drills. However, my “inability” to score an actual goal felt very real. I needed an outside perspective – a coach – to see my potential and set me up for success. 

While my situation may be unique, I know that many people are in similar predicaments. Just because we aren’t doing something now, it doesn’t mean we can’t do it in the future. If you’re having trouble wrapping your head around the possibility that what you thought was impossible may be possible, I recommend you find a coach or fitness professional to guide you. To achieve what we want to achieve usually requires training and hard work. Having someone encourage you and see things in you that you don’t see in yourself is incredibly helpful.

Thanks for reading. I hope you have a safe and healthy month.

Practice Makes Better

Practice Makes Better

We’ve all heard the saying “practice makes perfect.” I’ve used this in many conversations with others and even myself.  I thought of it as a motivational saying until I took the time to really think about the expression. Maybe it doesn’t work that well.

What exactly is perfect? Is perfect for you the same as perfect for me? Does perfect change as we learn new things? It seems to me like perfect is this impossible ideal that can never truly be met. If this is the case, then practice can’t make perfect.

That said, I think practice is incredibly important. Even though it was a while back, I still recall a coworker lying on the floor — unable to move— after completing a half marathon with two other coworkers.  While the other two coworkers had  been training for months—getting up at first light to run—this coworker hadn’t done anything to prepare.  He decided on a whim to sign up days before the race.

Impressively, he was able to complete the half marathon, but he finished much later and had a much tougher time recovering than those who had trained. He learned the value of practice, but it was a hard lesson. While some of us are naturally gifted in certain areas—like this coworker in endurance running—practice makes you better. Can you imagine how well he would have done had he actually taken the time and energy to practice first? 

Practice isn’t easy. It often requires planning, patience, and the ability to overcome setbacks. Sometimes it takes an outsider with a better understanding of the task at hand to help you design a program. If you’re having trouble creating and sticking to a program, I encourage you to find the support you need. If the program you are trying to implement is centered on fitness or health, feel free to shoot me an email.

Thanks for reading! I hope you have a safe and healthy month.   

How Many Lives?

How Many Lives?

I used to lead kids through various exercises. In one exercise, kids walked on a low balance beam. Depending on their ability, students were allowed a certain number of falls to accomplish the level. I’m not sure how this started, but many of the students began referring to the number of falls as their number of lives–like it was a video game.

This video game analogy got me thinking about the impact of falling. When we are very young, we fall a lot. If you’ve ever watched a toddler learning to walk, you know that their first attempts are full of falls. However, they are usually able to pop right back up without injury. Things change as we age. We often become more sedentary and begin to lose the strength, coordination, and flexibility that helped us recover so quickly when we were younger. While it’s not uncommon for a toddler to stand back up after three seconds, a fall in our golden years is a completely different story. They can be fatal, and unlike a video game, we can’t get a fresh start right where we left off. 

The good news is that strength, coordination, and flexibility can all be enhanced with a well-balanced exercise routine. If you aren’t already, I encourage you to invest in your future by starting a balanced exercise program now. If you need some assistance or are not sure where to start, feel free to reach out to a fitness professional. 

Thanks for reading. I hope you have a safe and healthy month.