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Mary E. Vandenack: Wellness Adventure

Create a wellness adventure in your life this spring

Touch it. Experience it. Own it.

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Last weekend, I saw a large flock of birds returning north. The sight and sounds brought out that great feeling of “spring is in the air.” If your health and wellness goals from New Years are long gone, who cares? Start again on the 1st of April. Spring is a great time to renew fitness goals. Following are some suggestions to make this spring a season to nurture your wellness.
 

BUY SOME WORKOUT CLOTHES YOU FEEL GREAT IN
When you enjoy donning your workout clothes, getting ready to work out becomes part of the fun. You may also find yourself putting on your workout clothes as casual wear. You then find yourself ready to work out and suddenly that is what you are doing.
 
 

LOG YOUR WORKOUTS AND YOUR EATING PATTERNS ONLINE
There are numerous free websites that allow you to keep track of your workouts and your eating habits online. Many of the websites also offer helpful information. Some post their workouts and fitness efforts on Facebook and other social networking sites. It can be an extra layer of social support.
 

FIND AN OUTDOOR FITNESS CLASS
There are lots of outdoor fitness class options in the spring and summer. The options range from intense bootcamp classes to yoga and tai chi in the park. If you can’t find a class you want to join, consider gathering a group of friends, finding an instructor and evolving your own class. If you belong to a gym, you can ask for ideas or available instructors. If you don’t belong to a gym, there are a lot of independent trainers and instructors who will accommodate a group.
 

TRY A NEW FITNESS ACTIVITY
Spring is a great time to take up a new activity. Consider trying a sport or activity you have never tried before. Alternately, join a club specific to your favorite activity to find others who love what you do.
 

SIGN UP FOR AN EVENT
Support a favorite charity or cause by signing up for an event. There are events for almost every charity. There are events encompassing all types of activities. A lot of the events have a fun element such as “Rolling The Colon,” a bike ride for colon cancer. This magazine is a great source of the events around town. You can always consider creating your own event.
 

CREATE A FITNESS INSPIRATION COLLAGE
Collect pictures of activities that you would consider trying. Also collect pictures of appearances and looks that you aspire to. Clip words and quotes that inspire you. Create a collage and place it where you will notice it.
 

TAKE CHARGE OF WHAT YOU PUT INTO YOUR BODY
It is easy to eat too much or make poor eating choices under stress, while on vacation or because you are around others who are eating poorly. Make a decision to eat well this summer. Have a plan in place on how to deal with the situations that challenge your eating before they arise.
 

UNPLUG
Consider unplugging the television for the summer. A recent study by University of Maryland reports that those who watch very little television generally report being happy much more often and with more vehemence than those who spend time in front of the tube.
 

TRY NEW RECIPES
Try new recipes. Try vegetables and fruits you have never eaten before. Walk through the grocery store on a mission to discover new flavors. In choosing recipes, eat for energy.
 

SPEND TIME WITH HAPPY PEOPLE
Being around a positive person has an uplifting effect. Happiness perpetuates. Choosing to be around those who are happy increases the likelihood that you will be.
 

ENGAGE IN GOOD KARMA ACTIONS
Mentor someone. Donate time or money to a cause you feel passionate about. Spend some time cleaning up the neighborhood. Choose to be kinder than usual to those whose path you cross each day. Reach out to someone that is struggling.
 

BREATHE DEEPLY OFTEN
Under stress, some may breathe more quickly and shallowly. Notice your breath. Lengthen your breath. Enjoy the spring air.
 

CHOOSE ROAD KINDNESS
Recently, I was driving past a local high school. A student pulled out too quickly and into the wrong lane. A man driving a truck skillfully avoided hitting the student; however, he went into a road rage. He followed the student for a mile and one half screaming obscenities and making gestures at the student driver. I couldn’t help but think that the man was modelling behavior that I hope the student driver won’t imitate. The student’s action certainly reflected inexperience but I can’t help but think the near miss had likely already scared her.

-end- metroMAGAZINE

 

 

 

Jun 3, 2011 02:05 pm
 Posted by  Dawn P

Mary, I enjoy reading your articles and I finally worked up the courage to write to you. About 11 years ago I worked for you in Yutan, and then at a new firm in Omaha. Since then I have pursued a career in massage therapy and from the knowledge I gained from you, I opened my own practice 8 years ago. I constantly remind my clients that a big part of maintaining wellness is to practice loving kindness not just for others but for themselves as well. Your articles are a great source of inspiration and wisdom for me.

Namaste!
Dawn Peterson, LMT
Artistic Handz

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