Category Archives: new things!

Changing Habits: Flossing is not hard

I think about habits a lot – how and why they form, why I do some things that someone else never would, why I don’t do other things. What motivates our habits? How do our personalities influence our habits?

The list goes on. My brain spins.

Most of my day-to-day {wellness} coaching focuses on helping people change their habits. It’s relatively easy to find information on nutrition, exercise and stress management around the internets. You could do your research and know what to do. The how is the stump – sometimes the mountain. Plenty of people will start a conversation with, “I know what I’m supposed to do…”.  This is typically followed by something they feel they “should” be doing, but, “it’s hard”.

Nope.

Whole 30 quote

 

——

Eating healthy isn’t hard. Low-intensity exercise a few days per week isn’t hard. Taking a deep breath instead of letting stress add another victory notch to its belt is not hard. It’s a personal challenge to change your habits, which can be humbling, frustrating and rewarding, but is it not hard.

But I’m still working on convincing people of that. Myself (sometimes) included.

I have a few personal habits that I’m constantly working on, and sometimes wonder why I can’t manage to hit that magic balance when I can help others do so all the time! Ah, the irony.

For example: every time I go to the dentist I’m reminded that I do not floss often enough. For the next few weeks I’ll do so somewhat diligently, usually half-heartedly, and then suddenly, I just don’t. Bye, floss.

Flossing is not hard. It usually takes less than 5 minutes – we only have so many teeth-gaps, the number doesn’t change (if it does..well, another day another problem). I always brush my teeth, so why don’t I remember to always floss?

The truth: I rarely forget, I just sometimes decide to skip it. I sometimes look at that unassuming box of floss and do a mental “nope”. I’d rather get into bed, or not make my gums bleed (but yes, I know they wouldn’t be as sensitive if I did it more often), or just simply don’t feel like spending the very little amount of energy it takes to pull out a string of floss, and pull it between my teeth. ….?! Oof.

I listened to an episode of “The One You Feed” a few weeks ago that mentioned common things people do that either help or hinder their habit-building intention(s). Two that resonated with me:

1) Build a streak
2) Don’t let yourself fail twice.

In relation to my seemingly insignificant flossing goal: Start noticing how many days in a row I stick to it, but if I skip one day? Don’t feel derailed – just do not skip the next day! Don’t do it. Simple as that. Get the brain & motivation in check –  like, C’mon you guys, this is simple! Do not let a thin piece of string beat you. Do. Not. Pull, cut, floss, repeat. Do it.

I’d like to proudly state that as of today, my happy (non-bleeding) gums have been flossed 27 days in a row (not a coincidence that it’s January 27th).

—–

There are so many unique ways to do this and we’ll all respond differently to varying techniques and strategies – add that to the challenge of coaching habit change – but I think that’s a positive for people working on habits. If you’ve tried something that just flat-out didn’t motivate or inspire you, try something else. (Insanity won’t do us any favors, yo.)

What habits are you having a “hard” time changing?
Or what type of habit seems to continuously elude you?
Any unique strategy / tips?

—-

More on this ish:

No Meat Athlete’s “Roadmap” for building a new habit

Gretchen Rubin’s Happiness Project Blog: Why Rewarding Yourself May Be a Bad Idea, For Habits

(Gretchen also has an entire book devoted to this coming out soon.)

MarieTV’s “One Simple Habit to “Fast Track” the Life You Want

 

2 Comments

Filed under about me, challenges, learning, new things!

Calm, to the Sun & Back

I’m working my way through the YTT readings this week, found myself happily saluting the sun in the SFO yoga room an hour ago, and just had a conference call about a Mindfulness project (for work). To say I’m feeling pretty calm, cool and collected (+ caffeinated) seems accurate.

steaming coffee_DOTR

Not something you hear often from people sitting and working in an airport, but there are many players here! First of all: hats off to you, SFO. The yoga room? Superb. It’s pretty small and serene, quietly situated between two terminals, so you don’t hear very much. Etiquette is posted on the outside (“Remove shoes”, etc) and mats are nicely rolled up and waiting for you to let them loose.

yoga room_SFO_DOTR

A few sun salutations and hip-openers later, I’m all ready for the {travel} day. Simple as that.

And last, but not least, my boss just nonchalantly mentionedCalm.com – which sounds like something a Gen-X/Y-er would say to describe their current state of affairs, but is actually a website + app. And very literal. Go there, let it be the soundtrack of your day, and man, you’re all set.

With that, I’m off to enjoy a long weekend in Texas’ oasis with two of my favorite gals. My sis has her cowgirl boots shined n’ ready for some two-stepping and Austin adventuring. Enjoy all of the above and remember it never hurts to tone it down a notch! 

Namaste, y’all.

2 Comments

Filed under about me, health, meditation, new things!, Yoga

5 Down: 200 Hour YTT

My research began long before we physically arrived in Monterey. Yoga Teacher Training (YTT) has been on my mind for years; as with many major life goals, there will be a lot of things that seemingly keep you from checking the box (really, you just stubbornly stand in your own way). But this little break from DC life seemed too perfect an opportunity to pass up. I found a studio, found their training schedule, and kept it bookmarked for months.

I barely mailed my deposit in on time, as the ghost of resistance finally faded with moments to spare. Adios, yo. We’re gonna do this.

—-

We’ll have seven weekends of Thursday – Sunday trainings over the next four months. We’ll complete at least 180 hours of training, 15+ classes of Prana yoga, and multiple other projects and observations. Last night got the process started – 5 hours in a small room with 15 other anxious yogis. In the 5 minutes spent sitting in silence, waiting, transitioning from student to teacher-in-training, my brain flipped through every yoga moment I can remember from the past 5 years. It also sat there being like “Do you have everything you’re supposed to? {Nope, not yet…} Don’t forget to bring a check tomorrow. 8 hours is a long time in one room. I wonder if it’ll be sunny this weekend…”, reveling in the last 5 minutes of the unknown, I s’pose.

Ytt_Day1

We completed a 90-minute heated class in the middle, sweating out any lingering nerves, doubts, annoying to-do lists or fears. We have 5 hours in, and endless asanas to go. This is exactly where each of us are meant to be, right now.

Ommmm, y’all.

Leave a Comment

Filed under about me, Goals, new things!, Yoga

Beginning the Odd Year: 2015

The great thing about ending the year coming off of an injury is that everything just seems pretty great, because you’re hopping back to it! Sure, there’s endless paranoia and restless heart beats and a grumpy ego, but they’ll come around soon enough. Ending those two months of idleness in a place like this wasn’t so bad, either…

2014-12-29 10.41.00-1

The go just sat back in awe and let the island do the talking.

For the first time in months, I was active without  a schedule. I had a few guidelines (“keep it easy – do what makes you happy!”), the first of which was quietly overlooked. We stayed in Kailua, which is resort-free and full of trails, stunning shores and perfectly flat running roads. We ran to, and then up, the “Bunker Trail” (aka Pill Box Trail) multiple times. We slipped and slided our way to Mauanwili Falls (this is no joke; be ready to hose yourself down!), we kayaked the Pacific, and we chased two shockingly-quick toddlers in the sand.

2014-12-30 07.48.19 2015-01-01 16.38.07 2015-01-01 17.29.20
2014-12-29 11.10.20

One day I ran for an hour, passing the Obama’s vacation home (NBD), and thinking “this may have been a little too long, too soon”, but not really caring enough to stop. {Insert the foolish-injured-runner’s-hand-raised!}
60 minute milestone: check!

 2015-01-01 11.22.27

And so begins the Odd year. I’ve noticed that I swing pretty far on the pendulum of goals achieved and actions taken every other year. I do just enough one year to keep myself sane and feel comfortable – traveling, running, indulging and enjoying. Then I get sick of feeling sane and comfortable (and slightly hung-over), and almost overcompensate.

The odd years stand out for the latter, and this one is throwing down a cannon-ball splash right away:

After today, I’ll be 5 hours into the 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training (YTT).
Next weekend I’ll visit Austin, TX for the first time with two of my favorite gals.
In
8 weeks I’ll have a new last name.
By May we’ll have run two goal races (13.1, 26.2).

By June we’ll be starting to plan a 200+ mile hike in the Sierras.

And that’s all we know for now. I have no goals or resolutions, but there are plenty of ways I’ve committed to keeping all systems active, engaged and happily exhausted!

2 Comments

Filed under challenges, new things!, running, Yoga

Forever Faster with Puma: Fitness + Comfort Gear Review

The following post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf
of PUMA.
Opinions are my own.

I’ll start this out with an honest confession: I’ve not previously been inclined to buy Puma shoes. I had a casual pair in college that I loved the look of, but they essentially suffocated my feet. We just didn’t get mesh, and I had to accept that. Move on. Shop with wide-feet-needs in mind.

But I signed on to check out what Puma has been up to lately, knowing that as much as I’ve changed since my college days, they probably have too. They have some new fitness gear and shoes up for the challenge.

Logic came out with a huge win on this one!

2014-10-31 06.31.28

Let’s start with their Fashion Comfort line. Because if you should know anything about me it’s that I love wearing anything that is not denim. Work in a fitness retail store for a while, wearing spandex or some extension of lycra, every day? You’ll never be the same. My current job agrees, as does my current working-from-home situation.

PUMA Comfort Collage Dietitian on the Run

If you’re on Instagram, you may think my “fall” wardrobe consists of one Puma sweatshirt. You may not be entirely off. 

Here you see the French Terry Sweatshirt, which I’ve adapted to every situation I possibly can. It’s a sweatshirt with style – a little swagger that goes a long way. It’s soft, fits perfectly, and easily pairs with fitness and every-day gear (think: jeans, crops, sweats or shorts). The Progressive Trend Pants are the kind of thing you’ll see me wandering around in all the time. Loose at the top, fitted around the ankle; technical dryCELL material that draw sweat from the skin should you be out-and-about or getting in some activity with these pants.

Sale alert: the FT Sweatshirt is marked down! Snatch this gal up!

————

Now, we have the real game-changers. I received two pairs of shoes to test out – see note above: I was a little weary of how these would feel, especially on some sensitive, post-marathon, trashed feet.

PUMA shoes_dietitian on the run

These shoes offer very different perks, but I may have discovered the key to Puma shoe-buying: order 1/2 a size up. I did so assuming they would be a little bit narrow, and 1) they don’t feel narrow at all, rather 2) they both fit like a sock. I can slip them on and off so easily, and just leave them by the door because I wear one or the other almost every day now.

The Mobium XT is perfect for cross-training activities such as weight-lifting (flat, minimal design) or spinning (lightweight, minimal, breathable, sleek). They’re officially my go-to gym shoe. You can hardly even tell you have them on, this is easily the lightest shoe I’ve ever worn. They twist, turn and bend with your moves. And they’re pretty chic – WIN.

Not totally convinced? Good – test them out for 30 days.

Next up – the Carson Runner. Designed for the to/from and around town things you might be up to. Breathable, with a little more cushion on the bottom for happy on-the-go feet. And while you’re on the go,  the anti-microbial sock liner’s got you covered.

————

Alright, friends. Enough talk, not enough action.
Let’s hit the workout gear:

PUMA Fitness Clothes_Dietitian on the Run

I admit that my workout wardrobe is completely dominated by my days with lululemon. I know it’s pricey, and I sparingly purchase items now, but it fits and it’s functional and I rarely find things that compare on both levels.

This outfit hit the mark. I ordered the same size in both and just crossed my fingers it would work – check! The crops (Move 3/4 Capris) are fitted, but not muffin-top-creating spandex. They’re just the right 3/4 length (I’m 5’5”), and most importantly, comfortable. Sale alert$24.50 > you’re welcome.

The Gym Tank is a stylish black top with a little shine a little hint of ‘pool’ green. I approve. The length was just-right, fit is true to size and Lycra-Sport material blend moves right with you. As you can see, I’ve tested this top up and down: 5-stars. Sale alert: Currently selling for $28 > so you’ve now got a new workout outfit for under $60!

—–

Add these to your shopping carts or holiday wish-lists if you’re on the market for some new gear with a sassy cat. They’ve really upped the game here and offer affordable kicks, crops and tops for any exerciser.

Nicely done, Puma. Thanks for the challenge to breakout of my brand boxes!

————-

What parts of your workout wardrobe need an upgrade? Have you tried any of the above? If so, let’s hear your thoughts, too!

3 Comments

Filed under cross training, fitness, new things!, running gear, things I Love