I’ve fallen and I can’t get up

Fallen off the wagon?  Gotten lost on your fitness journey.  Forgotten what a vegetable looks like?

If this sound familiar, give these 3 simple tips a try for the next 10 days – I guarantee you’ll be back on track.

Step 1:  Add 1 serving of fruit and vegetable to every meal.  Increasing your intake of the healthy stuff will decrease room in your belly for the junky food.  (Note, I didn’t say “good” or “bad” food.  Labeling food creates a judgement and instead we need to start looking at food as how well it fuels our body or fits a need.)

Step 2:  Commit to 30 minutes of exercise every day.  Yes, every day.  Pick an activity that raises your heart rate, gets you sweating and/or requires you to lift, push or pull something.  Walking is OK as long as you are walking at a brisk pace.  Brisk means you can chat but it’s not that easy.

Step 3:  Embrace you!  You are beautiful, no matter what size or shape you are.  Take the next 10 days to start accepting where you are in your journey, embrace how awesome you are right now and let that confidence lead you toward your goals. 

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

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All Hail the Power of Produce

Last week I talked about snacks and how to manage their existence in your household.  Today we’re going to talk about fruits and vegetables.

You all know how important eating 5-7 servings of fruits and veggies are, don’t you?

And you do eat 5-7 servings of fruits and veggies each day, right?  If the answer is yes, great job and keep it up.  Your body thanks you.  If, however you did some quick math and are coming up a few or more servings short I can help you with that.  It’s an easier fix than you think.

Step 1:  Loiter in the Produce Section

When I walk into a grocery store I start in the produce section.  For a fruit and veggie lover like myself it’s heaven.  Ripe, red apples, juicy strawberries, plump green and red grapes, and rows of leafy green lettuce call to me.  I love how orderly and organized the produce department is and it makes me want to buy and eat it all. And that is the point.

The next time you go shopping, start with produce.  And instead of zipping your cart through like a NASCAR driver, take a deep breath and wander.  Meander.  Linger.  Check out the apples and see which ones look good to you.  Sometimes I grab Fuji out of habit but there are a lk8537950ot of apples out there.  Granny Smith have a tart and sweet bite to it and are great with cheese or in a salad with some butter lettuce, pomegranate seeds and some crumbled feta.  Honeycrisp are firm, fresh, crisp and also a tad pricy but sooo worth it!

At the berries pick up a container and look at the bottom, are they smooshed and icky or are they all plump and firm?  Next grab a pineapple and take a big whiff.  Does it smell, well, pineappley?  If not, put it back.  I know, this will take you a bit of time but soon enough you’ll be able to pick the best produce more quickly.  Just by touch, sight and a squeeze here and there.

Step 2:  Shelve It!

This one seems to make so much sense but it took me FOREVER to figure out.  I would buy a ton of produce at the grocery store and then try and cram it all into those teeny little crisper boxes in my refrigerator.  Then I realized (duh) that if I took half of the produce out of the crisper and moved it to the shelves I would see it more easily and therefore use it.  Less wasted food, less wasted money.  Score!

Step 3: Crisper Management

One other “crisper” trick is to take your apples, berries, oranges etc. out of those plastic bags and put them in square plastic containers (don’t use the lids) so they are organized look more appetizing.  Going back to the grocery store experiment, think about how nice the apple display looks at the store.

To show you how easy it is, here’s a photo of my crisper.  Having my little pretties lined up and sorted makes me want to eat them.  Studies show that we eat with our eyes first so entice your peepers with a little food porn.

photo-9 (2)Give one or more of these simple tricks a try and watch your fruit and veggie intake rise.

Remember, the goal is 5-7 servings every day!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

Snack Chat

Today I’m going to share some of my “snack management” tips.  I have a husband and kids who enjoy chips, crackers, treats and snacks but it’s not something I want to eat on a daily basis.

And since I can’t just clear the house of these snacks (there was talk of a mutiny against me at one point) I developed some strategies that would allow me to have these snacks in the house for the family and not fall face-first into them at times of stress, fatigue or when I walk in the door after a long day and am ravenous.

1.  Clear the Decks

Move all chips, cookies, snacks and treats off of your kitchen counter and replace it with a bowl of oranges, apples or bananas.  Sounds too simple to work but it’s a remarkably effective tool.

2.  Make it a Hassle

In my house I have corralled all of the snacks into 2 plastic bins which I have placed in the top cupboard above my refrigerator.  I’m just under 5’5″ tall so for me to reach this top cupboard is a stretch.  In fact, I have to grab a pair of  long tongs to grab a bin or I have to pull over a chair to stand on.  Either way, it’s a hassle.  Grabbing a piece of fruit off the counter is much easier.

3.  Out of Sight, Out of Mind

When I do buy treats for myself I enjoy a few (or more, sometimes you know how that goes) and then I wrap the bag up with a rubber band, open that high cupboard above the refrigerator and then I chuck the package to the back of the cupboard.  When I don’t see the bag of Circus Cookies,  I don’t think about them.  And when I don’t think about them I don’t want them.  This is one of the most effective strategies I have in my arsenal.  It really works!

Now, some of you may just say that I should eliminate these items from the house completely because they are not healthy foods.  My philosophy on that is that I don’t want to  ‘demonize’ any foods for myself and for my kids.  That goes for fast food, Girl Scout Cookies or cake.  As long as you have enough healthy things in your diet, treats, snacks and yes, even McDonald’s is ok.  In moderation.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

Train your brain

Until about 2 months ago my regular Tuesday and Thursday morning runs were 4 miles long.  One Tuesday morning, I was coming back and decided to hang a right at a corner which would add another 3/4 of a mile to my run or about 6 minutes.

On my Thursday run, I did it again.  And then the following Tuesday and Thursday, and the following week, etc., etc., etc.  Now, when I don’t have to decide whether to add that 3/4 of a mile.  I just automatically, without giving it a second thought – turn right at the corner.

Doing something over and over again imprints on your brain so that it’s an automatic response.  When I get on a bicycle, I know how to ride it.   When I hop in the pool, I can still do the butterfly  (it’s not pretty but I can do it).  When I type, I sit up tall, and place my fingers on the keys proper way because in 9th grade typing Mrs. Gabriel stood over us on our IBM Selectrics and drilled it into our heads.  “A, space, K, space, eyes on the book, feet on the floor, fingers on the keys”

Repetition is the key, boys and girls, to forming a new habit.  Here are some ways you can create a healthy new habit.

  • For the next three days when you want a snack grab an apple or other piece of fruit.  Don’t think about what you’re hungry for because for many of us that means Oreos or peanut butter by the tablespoon.  Grab the fruit, heck, even grab 2 pieces (I know – CRAZY talk).
  • Drink at least 16 ounces of water from the time you get in the car to your destination.    When you get there, fill that bottle and aim to drink the rest on your way home or before you get to your next destination.
  • Every night you make dinner this week, add an extra dish or two of vegetables.  Roast some carrots, saute spinach, steam an artichoke.  You can also make my favorite melange; spray a pan with Pam and add sliced zucchini, mushrooms, onions and garlic.  Cook until soft (adding a touch of chicken broth or water so they don’t scorch) and add chopped kale or spinach at the very end.  I eat this with chicken, turkey, meatballs or as a base for two eggs in the morning.
  • Add 5 minutes to your workout every day this week. Turn right and loop around instead of running straight home, swim a few extra laps, walk past your house and around the block, or throw in a few extra yoga poses.  Add time consciously this week and next week or the week after you’ll do it automatically.

Good luck on creating your new habit!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

What do you want?

Tell me, what do you want?

More challenge workouts?
A PR in a race?
Healthy breakfast, lunch or dinner ideas?
Motivational quotes?
Pictures of kitties and puppies rolling in a meadow?
Tough love?
Ideas to slim down?  To be able to stick to a fitness plan?To run more, better or more often?

Something else???

Email me, share your thoughts, tell me how I can help you get what you need.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂