Working Out Your “Showing Up” Muscle

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The inspiration for this blog post all started a few months ago, at a group exercise class called Tabata.

There was a college student doing a research paper on “Why do people go to group exercise classes?” She needed our help by participating in a survey.

I was happy this was announced at the beginning of class so I could contemplate my feedback while participating in the class. I love processing while moving so I knew this would be effective.

After the class, I was eager to share my insights with the student and fill out the survey. I knew this was big and there was more to the picture. I was thinking about intrinsic happiness and self care.

Months have gone by and I am still pondering why I go to group exercise classes. I especially enjoy TRX and High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) classes.

HIIT is a type of cardiovascular training that combines intervals of MAXIMUM effort followed by a complete recovery. While these classes mix up the timing variations they will ALWAYS take you to your max.

I go to class for several reasons which have evolved over the past few years. I have exercised for many years, I notice how my energy becomes stagnant and my mind is cloudy if I don’t move my body. I started exploring group fitness because I knew there was more to the picture then running on the treadmill, getting on a stationary bike or hopping on the elliptical. I felt like I had plateaued in that arena and I was looking for something new.

A few years later, and I am still hooked on these HIIT classes.

Here Dr. Mercola has a supportive article about why he likes HIIT workouts and there is science to back up the benefits.

So what is it, that I enjoy and why do I encourage you to explore group exercise?

  • SHOWING UP regularly (commitment)
  • the teacher (find one you resonate with) creating the workout and encouragement
  • feeling great (endorphins released after exercise, triggering a positive body feeling)
  • the synergy of being in a group
  • the enjoyment of seeing people doing physical and mental self care
  • efficient and quick ( HIIT classes tend to be an appealing 30 minutes)
  • the after effect (metabolism boost for up to 48 hours after a complete routine)
  • upper body strength (important for healthy aging, we lose muscle mass as we age)
  • exercise settles the body so meditations can be deeper and less agitated

Mostly, I am inspired by what I’ve noticed regarding SHOWING UP and how that is expressed in all realms of a person’s life. I think attending group exercise class and committing to going is huge! It is meaningful because it strengthens our “show up” muscle! Please don’t confuse this with obligation vs. having discernment and healthy boundaries. I am talking about “showing up” in a healthy, loving way.
Based on personal observation, many people are “checking out.” It is so easy to check out because of the addiction to smart phones and other electronic nooses (oops, I mean devices…) make it very easy to stay distracted and fill up the calendar and then become overwhelmed and basically unavailable.

Now, more than ever, we need to show up for ourselves, family, friends, our community and the world. I think that there is a link between committing to showing up for class and getting there without excuses and for fully showing up to your precious life!

I hope this inspires you to try a new group fitness class or go online and look up some information regarding HIIT. Don’t wait until 2016 finish out 2015 feeling your best!

As always, consult your physician before exercising if this is new to you or you have a health concern.

Be Well~
Beth

Aromatherapy Classes

February 20, 2013, Wednesday 6-8
February 23, 2013, Saturday 1-3

Cost: $15

Stay healthy with an Aromatherapy Lifestyle
Still Point Wellness is proud to have Beth Bluth and Tacy Apostolik, two of Appalachia’s finest magic makers and holistic health practitioners, sharing their deep wisdom of the healing powers of essential oils. You will gain a profound understanding of how to stay free from sickness and increase vitality by this wonderful experiential and fun workshop!

More information:
http://stillpointwell.blogspot.com/2013/02/staying-healthy-with-aromatherapy.html

Blue Zones and Cultivating Purpose

photo2Have you been searching for the magic bullet as a vehicle to ultimate health? What would your life look like if you experienced high-level wellness most of the time? Living in a world of information at our finger tips, millions of supplements claiming to make it all better and immediate satisfaction as the general standard/expectation creates a dissonance from our true self and basic needs.

Taking time to slow down, shrinking the to-do list and perhaps declining some invitations to social events that can stretch you too far might be the start to allowing more time to be with yourself. This is when you can take the time to realize that health is a vehicle and not a destination. What lights you up? What triggers your stress levels? Every person is different and to be familiar with your own triggers requires knowing yourself. When life is simplified we create space to breathe and reflect and become more expansive. There are some communities in this world that actually do this. In particular, these geographical hot spots are known as Blue Zones.

So, that brings me to life in The Blue Zone. I just spent the past month living in one of the world’s Blue Zones and I am intrigued by the people and their lifestyle. I was in Nosara a small city in the region of the Nicoyan Peninsula along the pacific coast of Costa Rica.

If this topic intrigues you, check out the book by National Geographic Explorer, Dan Buettner. Blue Zones, Lessons for Living Longer From the People who’ve Lived the Longest.

Buettner has studied specific regions of the world where more people live to 100 years old (centenarians) than other areas of the world. His research team came up with the common denominators amongst the inhabitants of these special hot spots. He wanted to know what were these people doing differently that contributed enriched years to their life.

The following is a general list of what he concluded:

  • they tend to put their families/loved ones first, (this may require some flexibility)
  •  being in the sunshine and getting adequate Vitamin D
  • being outside and in the elements for natural forms of exercise and movement, not being sedentary
  • having a strong faith based community to connect (helps to relieve stress and anxiety related to well-being)
  • feeling genuinely happy with life and oneself
  • they know their sense of purpose
  • adequate sleep (adapting to the natural rhythms of the sun)
I realize this entire list may be unreachable due to one’s personal circumstances, however trying to incorporate 1 of the above seems reasonable so give it a go if you are up for the challenge.
 
Here’s an inspirational bumper sticker expression to get you motivated, “This is your life, not a dress rehearsal.”
 
So live in the present moment and start breathing more deeply. Note: the long exhale is just as important as the inhale. Conscious breathing will give you time to cultivate awareness and react to life with more ease.
 
Pura Vida!

Herbalism & Children’s Wellness

If you are one of those people that has a deep desire to become empowered, informed and educated, then learning will be part of your life’s journey.

Daily, I am inspired to learn about how to bring more balance into my family’s life. Balance starts with health. Health in all areas is crucial to feel complete & vital. Taming stress and managing anxiety are “buzz phrases” and learning how to apply them to life takes practice and dedication. Most of all it takes awareness. So, that brings me to the question of “how do we develop awareness?” and what does that have to do with herbalism and children’s wellness?”

The answer to that question can become a thesis, so I will try to keep it short and sweet.

Get in tune with your child. Notice when they are acting out and seem cranky or their sleep seems off. Most importantly pay attention to their digestive system and regularity. I have noticed that headaches or an irregular elimination may be the indicator that imbalance is occurring in the body and that sickness may be lurking in the near future. This is a time to pull out all of your herbal allies. I tend to use an elderberry concentrate tea, probiotics, echinacea tinture or pure & authentic essential oils.

Join the webinar tonight and learn how to winterize your child’s well being. Learn the preventative herbal measures needed to keep your child healthy through the colder months.
http://herbwebinar.com

If you missed the webinar with Dr. Aviva Romm you can sign up for her newsletter which is packed with tips for raising healthy children. I have her eBook, Herbs for Kids. I am willing to email it to you if you send me a request. Or you can purchase one of her books that are listed on her website. Just visit www.avivaromm.com.

Through Dr. Romm, you will learn how and when to use botanicals vs. medication. Her website provides various recipes for cough syrups and herbal teas that support the upper respiratory tract and help the body manage various coughs.

Her list of safe and effective supplements for babies, toddlers and young children is thorough and very user friendly. These supplement suggestions include but are not limited to:
zinc, vitamin C, vitamin D, garlic honey lemonade and suggestions for getting essential fatty acids through different foods.

Her website will give you recipes for supporting the upper respiratory tract and coughs using herbs such as; lemon balm, chamomile, elder flowers, licorice, anise and various other amazing botanicals.

The body constantly gives off cues as to what is going on – if we are too distracted or too busy to notice, then the issues may escalate into more serious problems.

Herbalism is a gift from the Earth and we can all participate in using these precious herbs in someway. Most likely you are already using herbs in your daily cooking. These herbs offer so much more than flavor or scent – many of them are packed with nutrient dense components and are immune system supportive. Keeping a fresh stock of your dried herbs will keep the potency and efficacy intact. Do to so, buy your herbs in the bulk section of the health food store and store them in little glass containers. Or better yet, plant your own herb garden. Have your child help with this and they will appreciate watching their efforts sprout through the dirt. All children benefit from having a close relationship with nature and from it’s ancient roots in herbalism. I see the transformation with my own child when we are in the woods and she is nestled next to a moss covered fallen tree. All layers of her being transform into pureness and her protective outer layer melts away into the Earth.

Herbs can be used for for childhood ailments such as colds, teething, colic and various other illnesses that children often contract. Just like anything, there is a time and place for herbalism, and a time to seek medical help. Typically, when I first notice an ailment in myself or my daughter I resort immediately to herbal remedies in the form of tincture, essential oils, or herbal teas. Often these remedies do nip the illness in the bud. It is wise to have a good relationship with a pediatrician who is familiar with your child when he or she is well. Then, should something serious come up you can bring your child to receive the medical attention that is needed.

I have a couple of amazing resources to offer you.

  • Naturally Healthy Babies and Children by Aviva Jill Romm A Commonsense Guide to to Herbal Remedies, Nutrition and Health
  • Family Herbal by Rosemary Gladstar A Guide to Living with Energy, Health and Vitalit
  • http://www.learningherbs.com an online resource to making your own and herbal mentor support

Children’s Wellness

Recently, I was asked to write about keeping children healthy. Since I have an 8 year old and I am very interested in staying well I have been pondering this topic and wondering where to start. I have decided that it has to be a multi-part posting. I weave so many different strategies into staying well and the single most important aspect to wellness in my opinion is taking preventative measures and being aware of your child’s general baseline. Tuning in and paying attention to your child’s mood and energy level can be helpful and a useful indicator as to how they are feeling before signs of illness show up. Of course, like anything this is not an absolute statement because sometimes there can be a fever or cold that comes on suddenly.

This is my own personal experience with sickness. Your experience will be different and these are just some thoughts abut how you can help your child feel better from more mild illnesses.

Aside from eating a whole foods diet (which I believe is a key factor in a child’s wellness) therapeutic-grade essential oils are one of my first lines of defense – especially for being proactive.

I use Oil Testimonials as an on-line reference and a useful guide book is the Essential Oils Pocket Reference available through Essential Science.

Through those resources you will learn how to use some of the most well known oils and their functions. It is crucial that you use the purest quality oils available. Inferior quality oils will not produce therapeutic results and can actually be toxic.

Essential oils have been used throughout time dating back to 4500 BC. Research shows that pure essential oils can provide similiar benefits to humans and animals that they give to plants.

The oils that I usually choose for keeping my child well are: eucalyptus radiata to support the respiratory system, patchouli to support the digestive system, lavender for cuts, scrapes, burns and headaches and tea tree for skin irritations. I use them all with a carrier oil and I never use essential oils on her face. Most essential oils can create a inhospitable environment for microbes and bacteria. To learn more you can set up a session with me.

There are specific ways & guidelines to use essential oils safely and effectively. I believe that having a support person while learning how to use the oils responsibly is important and will help you in using the oils instead of allowing them to collect dust on your bathroom shelf. Generally, there are 250 drops in a 15ml bottle and approximately 85 drops in a 5ml bottle. They do last for a while and they have a long shelf life when not mixed with carrier oils.

Some sources for your therapeutic-grade essential oils are:
Young Living essential oils (my member # 650126)
Original Swiss Aromatics
Floracopeia
New Directions Aromatics (Canada)

Happy Oiling!

Eat More Plants

I recently watched the American documentary, Forks Over Knives. It was an incredibly well done film and even if you don’t agree with everything it claims you will still receive some very important messages about your health. You will also be amazed at the direction that our society is going as far as health and wellness.

Did you know that eating a more plant-based diet is one of the most powerful things you can do for the environment? Many health care professionals recommend a plant-based diet to help prevent & reverse the common western diseases including heart disease, diabetes and cancer.

Watching this film may support you in resisting the foods that sabotage your effort to lose weight and improve your overall health. This is for anyone that has read Paulo Coelho’s book, The Pilgrimage, “fight the good fight!”

Be aware – you will want to make changes and substitute more healthy vices/choices into your lifestyle. Think: yoga, meditation, exercise, more hugs, healthy sweet treats, more veggies etc.

Cheers!

Fall Detox Guide

Fall is a natural time of transition, which makes it ideal for a gentle detox cleanse to reset your body and mind while priming you for a winter of wellness.

This informative booklet, provided by The Institute for Integrative Nutrition, explains why periodic cleanses are good for you as well as containing a complete 3-day seasonal menu for naturally cleansing foods that are as delicious as they are nutritious. This special meal plan will support your body’s own detox systems without leaving you feeling deprived.

Wishing you a Happy & Healthy Autumn

Finding Your Balance

Have you ever heard of healthy eating becoming unhealthy? Hard to believe it, but it’s true. The official term is Orthorexia Nervosa. It happens when the extreme of health consciousness occurs. I am always talking about finding your individual balance. It is a journey and what works one day may not be what you need the next. I have been on the path of holistic wellness for the past 9 years and wow- what a journey it is! I have studied so many different modalities to find out that most of them clash in some philosophy or principle.

My goal has been to discover the common thread amongst all the phenomenal information that presents itself to me. I look for the truth and what resonates for my needs. I use discernment in this process and I enter this journey with an open heart and mind – One without the other will not help me. I have felt times when I was heading in the extreme direction of health and when look back at that time I realize I was rigid and closed to other possibilities entering my world. Now I practice 80/20. This is when 80% of the time I eat very clean and healthy and 20% of the time I can use for eating out or indulging in a chocolate delight.

I encourage you to take a look at your lifestyle and notice how you feel about your daily choices. Are they serving you and uplifting you? Is health a four letter word for you or something that you equate to upliftment and vitality? Enjoy the journey and aim for what you align with and that which makes you feel good – not just a burst of joy but a sustainable joy! Be mindful of excessive choices and keep the balance.