Simple and Unique Summer Workout Challenge

Want more time with your family and friends … plus a way to increase your motivation, strength, energy, metabolism? Oh, and have things to do in the summer when you (or family) are bored?

Take this summer workout challenge for the next 4 weeks.

I’m taking it with you and going to post on my Instagram and Facebook pages what I’m doing. Check it out — and share what you are doing too!

Let’s rock this summer fun!


7 Pro Tips for shopping the Farmer's Market

Have you ever wandered around a Farmer’s Market, curious but not really sure how the whole thing works? Or, worse, not even gone because it felt too intimidating.

Here’s 7 tips to get you shopping at the outdoor markets like a pro!

  1. Don’t buy the first things you see. Unless it is the last 15 minutes of a market, there is plenty to choose from. Walk around and see how has the best looking and variety of produce. Sometimes I initially bought a lot of squash from one vendor, then found out 4 stalls down someone had perfect green beans - but I didn’t buy them because I didn’t want to go to the trouble of freezing the squash. (And it is not cool to try to “return” food …)

  2. Bring bags. The vendors usually have bags, but bringing your own makes it nicer for you. Some vendors charge for bags, too.

  3. Bring a little cash. Most vendors take credit cards, especially higher ticket items like meat. But some are cash only.

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4. Always ask vendors for advice. They love to share. (If they don’t, move on. The next one will.) Recipes, when a piece of fruit will be ripe, and how food is grown are perfect questions. Many vendors are not certified organic because of the cost involved, but they grow organically.

5. If you are going to be out for over an hour in the hot sun, bring an ice chest for frozen meats and fish.

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6. Wear comfortable shoes. Ladies, if you are going after work and are in heels, bring out that pair of walking shoes you keep in the car. (You do keep a pair of walking shoes in the car for impromptu walks, right?)

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7. Last, if you can plan a few minutes to enjoy the music or watch kids play games, most markets have some type of outdoor entertainment.

Shopping outside can be such a pleasure and when you know what you are doing, it is easy.

10 How To's for Heart Health

Celebrating National Heart Health Month … let’s talk about 10 ways to improve your heart health and decrease your risk of cardiovascular disease.

  1. Step number one: When was your last annual check up with your doctor? If it has been over a year, stop reading this and call to set up your appointment. Getting your baseline “blood work” (blood sugar, cholesterol, etc.) and talking with your doctor about your heart health is foundational.

  2. While you are waiting for the appointment day, start walking 20 minutes a day for 3 days a week. In a 2001 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association even “1 hour of walking per week predicted lower risk” of heart disease.

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3. Got that baseline walking as a habit? Then let’s build up the walking to 20 minutes to an hour on 5 days per week. This will lower your risk even more.

4. Trouble fitting in the extra walking? No worries. Your heart doesn’t care how it gets worked, it just wants to get worked. Try cleaning house at a brisk pace or washing your car by hand or push mowing your lawn. Or try these other ideas.

5. Needing some family time? Playing tag and throwing Frisbees can get your heart pumping. (Especially if you are like me - walking to get it when I don’t catch it.)

6. Smoking? Exercise can help you kick the habit. Seek the help you need to stop.

7. An apple a day … or oatmeal … or beans … or nuts/seeds … or even avocados. These are all rich in the type of fiber that helps to lower “bad” cholesterol.

8. Laugh. A. Lot. It is great to help reduce blood pressure…which relates to #9.

9. Stress less. What are your stress triggers? How do you relieve stress? Stress comes at us all, so have a plan.

10. Strength train. Once you have your walking or other heart-pumping exercise in habit, add some strength training to increase your “good” cholesterol. Even two strength training sessions per week will help your heart health.

Questions? Let me know.