Cleaning Out The Cobwebs In Your Mind

cobwebs By Airwolfhound [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Notice: This Friday we will be conducting a fitness test during your workout.

Cobwebs to Clean Up

Cleaning out the cobwebs in you mind is just like cleaning up your environment.

It can help you see what is useful and what needs to be sent to the curb.

Do you have any old lingering memories that need to be packed up and shipped out?

Something that fuels negative self-talk?

Using your imagination to clean up and chuck out can help you to move on for a time.

Instead of dwelling on the memory, you recognize it, tell it what you need to, and then chuck it.

Chuck It

I used to do this when I would go for a run and a certain song came on.

It is still my “cleaning out the attic song”.

After I would toss out what I no longer wanted or needed, I would imagine myself a little brighter, a little stronger.

Who am I without those memories coloring my view of myself?

Is that person closer to who I want to be? Is she “more than” the person with that nagging memory?

Granted, if you are having a real tough time of it, and have manifested habits that are unhealthy, then asking help from a professional psychologist may be a better option than the mental cobweb clean-up.

A professional cobweb cleaner can help guide you through the process without getting bitten by a nasty memory.

Grow A Little More Into You

When I chuck a nagging memory, one that is disruptive, I work at getting a glimpse of who I am without it.

Sometimes it is surprising because of how much of a crutch that memory was.

“Poor me” memories seem to cause the most surprise.

You no longer have the excuses and have to step up.

Seeing empathy in the actions of another person, even if they were not helpful but hurtful, can help you to reframe the whole experience.

Then I see who I could be in that mindset.

If you have a way of cleaning out the cobwebs what is it?

With a clear mind find yourself in training. Cheers!!

Notice: This Friday we will be conducting a fitness test during your workout.

Stop Chasing Sleep, Let it Come to You Instead

chasing sleep, let sleep come
Notice: This Friday we will be conducting a fitness test during your workout.

Chasing Sleep Down

Instead of chasing sleep down, consider letting it come when it will.

One of the things that I have found to be effective when I read is to not put my book away until I have almost dozed off a couple of times.

I ask myself; “Am I tired enough?”.

If I think I am not, I keep on reading.

I have stopped trying to force it. To think about how tired I am and how much it sucks to not be sleeping yet.

I did not realize I was stumbling into what is called Paradoxical Intention (PI).

According to this Psychology Today article;

PI ‘involves remaining passively awake and avoiding any efforts to fall asleep.’

Let Sleep Come To You

It makes sense that the less pressure you put on yourself about something, the more likely you will be able to do it.

Apply PI to any part of your life you are having difficulty executing.

I liked the example used in the Psychology Today article about a figure skating performing a jump.

They can perform it in practice, but in competition they fall down.

There is too much pressure to perform. It needs to be relieved in some way.

I imagine that building an acceptable result around failing a “difficult” part takes some pressure off.

Rested Is Enough

Switching to a mindset of ‘being rested is going to be enough’  helped me feel less pressure to get seven to eight hours of sleep.

This helped me not to chase sleep.

Feeling sort of tired, then more and more tired, before I put my book down allows sleep to come to me.

Have you ever used PI without realizing it? If so, how?

Can you see a place in your life that you could use PI? If so, how?

Training a little each day can take pressure off of maintaining fitness. Cheers!!

Notice: This Friday we will be conducting a fitness test during your workout.

Move Your Body To Clear Your Mind

clear the mind get out and move
Notice: This Friday we will be conducting a fitness test during your workout.

Clear Your Mind With Movement

Today I need to clear my mind. It is full of depressing feelings and negative self-talk.

I feel a level of heightened anxiety around not “being enough” or “being too much”.

Tiredness is also pulling at me.

Looking back at yesterday I think I know why today is gloomy in-spite of the shining sun.

Thomas and I had a working morning, then went out to his Aunts and played parkour with her and her son.

We stayed and had dinner. With dinner was a couple of glasses of wine.

With wine came sweet and salty cravings which we acted on.

By the time we went to bed I was starting down a path of self loathing.

Get Out And Move

What Can I Do Today to clear my mind and do some self-care…get out and move.

Recognize that the past is in the past.

Start by practicing “making decisions to take care of myself instead of blaming myself for what has passed”.

I have witnessed and coached people through these moments.

The frustration of “not having learned yet” is real.

Understand that you made a choice for a reason.

Spend a little time reflecting on “what is the reason”?

Then clean the slate and move on.

The next action you take is the only one you can control.

There is no need for promises, or blame.

Actions Not Shame

Earlier in the day your tank of energy is full and self-care actions are easier to make.

A solid first meal, moving a bit, and planning your next meal.

Practice the habits you know that work for you.

What we believe to be true is the only truth we will come to know.

The path that you lay out before you, in your mind, is the one you end up walking.

If you do not like the path you have to imagine what you want it to be.

For me it is to be an active, fulfilled, and an assertive person.

What is your path looking like for you?

If you want to change it, what would it look like?

Training can be a way to take a step along your health path. Cheers!!

Notice: This Friday we will be conducting a fitness test during your workout.

Fluid is More Than Water, It Hydrates

fluid is more than water
Notice: This Friday we will be conducting a fitness test during your workout.

How Much Fluid?

There is a belief, promoted by the media, that the only fluid that is good for hydration is water.

A study on “Human Water Needs” was published in 2005. In it it stated that “water consumed as drinking water, water in beverages, and water in food contributed to fulfilling water needs.”

You may have noticed a change lately in media when it comes to hydration recommendations.

Now they are stating all “fluid” counts towards hydration.

Which is the same thing.

Using the word fluid mitigates the idea that hydration needs can only be meet by drinking water.

Which was the media take-away back then.

Do you remember the recommendation of “eight 8oz glasses (total 64oz) of water is needed to keep hydrated”?

The study from 2005 states that “daily water intake for adult men is 3.7 L and women is 2.7 L on average”.

64 oz is a little less than 2 L of water, at 1.89 L. Which makes the 8 x 8oz recommendation pretty safe.

It obviously takes into account that water/fluid comes from other beverages and food.

Fitness and Water

Throw in being active and stories of dehydration, along with an idea that more is better, made things get dangerous.

Until a few years ago, no one had heard of hyponatremia.

This is when the concentration of sodium in your blood gets to low.

This can lead to “nausea and vomiting, confusion, seizures, or lost consciousness“.

Untreated it can be deadly.

In 2007 a young contestant of a radio show contest drank too much water and died.

Where’s The Fluid?

You can get your daily fluid intake from multiple places.

As in what you drink and what you eat.

Right now there is no evidence that caffeine in coffee or tea acts as a diuretic, as was recently believed.

Most fruit and vegetables contain some water, which will add to your intake.

To know if you have had enough, the “urine test” is consider easy and accurate.

Is your urine a very light yellow? Then you should be in balance.

There is not a need to pre-hydrate unless you train for more than and hour.

For your training session make sure that you are balanced in hydration. Cheers!!

Notice: This Friday we will be conducting a fitness test during your workout.

Feeding Relationships, One Visit At a Time

feeding-CCJeffrey Friedl ”

Drip-Feeding Relationships

For socially awkward people, drip feeding relationships is a way to manage what can seem overwhelming.

I have a tendency to second guess myself in relationships. No matter what kind of relationships they are.

I have to work at not assuming what is going on in other people’s minds.

Most of the time I end up telling myself “the only way you will know is if you ask”.

Since we have been back in Norway, we have been nourishing relationships that have been on ice for awhile.

Awkwardness Is Unnerving

Whenever Thomas and I are at social gatherings, where we do not know most of the people, we stumble through the meet and greet.

I think it should be straight forward. Shake hands, say your name and “it is nice to meet you”.

Yet, I walk the wrong way, miss hands, turn my back, miss names, and get overwhelmed.

I start to feel detached from the moment.

If someone talks to me, I miss what they say and have to ask them to repeat it.

Then I get self conscious about looking like a ditz.

It leaves me thinking I need to wear a warning sticker saying “give me a second”.

Drip, Drip, Drip

We have visited with Thomas childhood friend and his partner around four times now.

This last time I finally started to join in on the conversion more readily.

I could claim that it is not feeling confident in my Norwegian language skills, but that is not the total truth.

I need to drip-feed a relationship. Getting to know a person slowly, build some mutual understanding and trust.

Taking myself not-too-seriously helps when I start off with social awkwardness high-jinks.

Those strange moments can be used as an ice breaker, by poking a little fun at myself.

Do you make fast friends or do you also need to slowly drip-feed relationships?

What are your favorite go-to’s for getting to know someone?

Cultivating healthy relationships is one way to support your training and healthy lifestyle. Cheers!!

Shift to Appreciating Training, From Stressing About It

appreciating instead of stress

Appreciating What You Can Do

Training can be a way of appreciating what your body can do.

I struggle with this a lot, so I thought I may not be the only one, and maybe we could think it through together.

Sometimes your body can surprise you. It does something you thought was beyond your ability.

When we are working up to something, it is hard to realize what or where it will lead us.

That is what testing your strengths and weaknesses are for.

It is a way to evaluate and appreciate how far you have come.

That is one reason I liked training people to lift weights. Each incremental weight change improves their strength.

When you can look back over a month and see that they have added pounds to all their lifts, it gives them such a rush.

Reflection

I remember one client starting off using the smaller weights with the barbell.

We had to lift the barbell off the ground a little because it was too low to pick straight up off the floor.

By the end of the month we were able to use the larger 45 pound plates. Then she did not need to use raised platforms to lift the bar off.

For her it was like taking off training wheels.

It was almost more exciting than having gone from lifting her starting weight of 65 pounds to 135 pounds. (Her results are not always reflective of how things go, but when a person first starts lifting they can make quick gains!)

Throw Away The Stress

It is easy to get caught up in not doing this, or that. Not making the goal you expected, feeling down and stressed about it.

Instead, consider taking a moment and reviewing what you have done.

Does your program need adjusting?

Did you dial it in a few too many days?

Where your result goals realistic in the first place?

What results did you get?

Then you can still go for your results goal, with a few adjustments.

And, maybe a little more confidence, because you now know what was not working.

Figure out a way to think aboutt training that helps you to feel like you are building up to, instead of “remaking”.

Do you approach training with appreciation or stress?

Why?

We certainly appreciate the effort you put in to your training daily. Cheers!!

Eyes Shut But the Light Is Still On

shut eyes while still light

Shut My Eyes But It Is Still Light

I can not shut my eyes tight enough to block out this sunlight.

Since we got to Norway, the sun has been setting later and later in the evening.

(Photo above, from last night at 10:00pm!)

It makes me wonder how people who have to sleep while it is light out can control their environment.

I know when we lived in Norway, I had to paint our bedroom dark blue and have a rolling shade with black-out curtains.

It makes sleep possible but getting up a challenge.

Now, every couple of nights, we stay up later and later without realizing it.

Shift works and People Living Far North

My brother has done shift work for the better part of fifteen years.

He has had shortened sleep days, and weekends full of catch-up sleep.

Being in the far north makes it obvious that not everyone can rely on their circadian rhythm to guide them to sleep.

It does not seem to be an issue if the sun goes down before 10:00pm.

I recall hearing people chatter about how much more they get done in the summer, with extended daylight hours.

I hear the same thing here.

But when twilight comes around 11:00pm and the sun comes up around 4:00am, you’re left with 5 hours of dark.

For a light sensitive person, that is tough!

Control Your Environment

If you can not build yourself a sleep cave, what can you do?

Learn to sleep with eye covers on. After you get dead tired, it kind of comes easily.

I feel sorry for night shift works because they have to deal with daytime noise.

No one is trying to be quiet, and not everyone else is home sleeping.

Ear plugs and/or white noise must be the answer.

I imagine it is also has the same training; Get dead tired and it comes easily.

What is the light like where you live?

Do you need to make seasonal adjustment, if so, which adjustments do you make?

I hope you got around eight restful hours of sleep to fuel your training today. Cheers!!

Play, Training, Practice, Workout, and Exercise

play, exercise, practice, training,

Lets…Play, Training, Practice, Workout, and Exercise,

What is the difference between using the words training, practice, workout, exercise, and play when communicating movement?

These words are used differently, depending on who you are speaking to.

At first I thought there was a difference in terminology depending on who you were talking to and about;

For us everyday folks words like workout, exercise, and play are often used.

Athletes were assigned words like train and practice.

Progression of Words

When I took gymnastics they did not use the word play, exercise or workout.

Yet, we were little kids trying to touch our toes and not fall over.

We practiced gymnastics, and if you were competing, then you trained for a meet.

Dance was all about practice and performance. I guess “performance” is what makes it more of an art than a sport.

Since I took dance, competitive dance is popularized. Maybe, their words have changed to include “training”.

Professional Words

When I started to read about the professional side of personal training, I came across the separation between “working out” and training.

Working out is associated with an everyday Jo(anne) going to a gym and getting on a tread mill or doing a lifting circuit.

Their goal is to go to the gym and move.

Training is to purposefully train for an event or competition goal.

Training takes into account progressing to improve skills over time, to peak at an event.

Attention is paid to eating, sleeping, recovery, not just the time doing your sport.

Trends

With increased popularity of average people doing road/cross country running races, triathlons, Cross-fit, cycling, etc.

A switch from “working out” to a “training” mind set has become more popular too.

Most people have a day job. So, very few compete at the elite athletic level.

Elite athletes are prepared to make the personal, bodily, and time sacrifices required to compete at that level.

Bit Better Coaching is influenced by a training mindset, since it includes nutrition and recovery. We also look towards play to stay motivated.

Have fun playing, while getting in your training today. Cheers!!

Entertainment With Food & Drink

entertainment-By thefuturistics (Cake, cake, cake!) [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Soul + Function + Entertainment

Food and drink have been a form of entertainment for a long time.

Now we can watch shows on a network devoted to food and drink.

Many people have made their lives and livelihood devoted to food and drink by making their own blogs or vlogs.

Why is food and drink so entertaining? Is it an art form, or a source of energy?

Food for Soul

When we grow up we learn about our family’s food culture. What we eat during celebrations, family get-togethers, or for everyday meals.

One person in our immediate family, or a close relative, would like to cook. They would make tasty food. We started to have favorite foods and then tie them to special moments.

An example of this for myself, is  a traditional Norwegian birthday cake; bløtkake, and being in Norway during the Summer.

Since my birthday is during the summer months, when we would visit family, I got to fall in love with their traditional birthday cake.

It developed my over-all fondness of cake and pastries.

When I had cake in the states for the first time, I remember wondering what was wrong.

The icing was so sweet. To me, cake had whipped cream with a hint of sugar for icing, and fresh berries.

I grew to like and enjoy American sheet cake, but it will never be birthday cake to me.

Food for Function

When we hear the word diet we think of restrictions and not eating good food. This does not have to be the case.

When you have a specific purpose or health wish, then food becomes about how it makes your body function.

This can inform your decisions on what food works for you. It does not say anything about how the food tastes.

If I want to get fit and healthy, having cake every week does not work for me.

Having Norwegian birthday cake once a year still does.

Do you see food as entertaining? If so, in what way?

Can food also support how you want your body to function? If so, in what way?

Consider testing how well your food choices support your training energy today. Cheers!!

Practice Give and Take In Relationships

give and take

Give and Take Not A Game

To give and to take is not a game to be played, especially in relationships.

When we first start to learn how to socialize, there is a give and take.

Be good and share your toys then you will make friends.

Eat your vegetables then you can have a cookie.

Do your chores and then you can watch TV, play a game, see your friends.

Going to school is give and take.

If you give your all to studying, then you will get good grades.

It is easy to see how we would apply this to relationships;

If you do this for me, then I will do this for you.

Deciding Who You Are

As we grow up, we start to figure out what we believe is a good way to be human.

We figure out how we want to treat other people.

I remember when I first heard of Karma. It struck a chord with me.

“What goes around comes around” sounded like a fair way to live.

I believed that if I wanted to be treated nice, then I needed to treat other people nicely.

After practicing what I think is being nice for a while, I noticed it did not affect how I was being treated.

At first I was deeply saddened by this. I felt there was no way I could improve the world if I could not influence it, even with good karma.

“Head Smack”

Then I realized I was not really practicing good karma.

I went in with an expectation that if I gave other people courtesy and respect they would return the favor and treat me with the same.

They have no obligation to do so.

I could not “take” back the courtesy and respect I had given.

Instead I choose to give curtesy and respect to others because that is how I want to interact with people.

If it is not returned then I know we do not share that perspective. That’s OK.

How I respond is my choice and within my control.

What lessons have you learned when it comes to give and take while growing up?

How do you view give and take in relationships now?

Give yourself a high five for being a bada** and getting in your training today. Cheers!!