Monthly Archives: December 2017

Wellness Roadmap Part 5

This is part 5 of a 5-part Wellness Roadmap series.  You can find part 1 here.

What happens when you reach your health and fitness destination? Consider the acronym, CARG0:

Celebration – Take the time to look back at where you were and how far you have come. Celebrate your success and consider rewarding yourself.

Adjusting to your new normal – You’re looking and feeling healthier and people may make comments, both positive and potentially negative. Accept the new you.

Reset your GPS – You’ve achieved your initial vision. Don’t let that be the end. Shift your attention to what you’d like to achieve going forward and set your new vision (GPS).

GO – Take action and continue working to maintain and improve your health and fitness.

The end of one journey is the beginning of another. Health and fitness is no different. When you reach a goal, use CARGO to keep you looking toward what is on the horizon.

Wellness Roadmap Part 4

This is part 4 of a 5-part series.  You can find part one here.

On the last episode, we discussed the first three aspects of STREETS, or how to reach your health and fitness destination. Now we’ll discuss the final four: energy, education, time, and stress management.

Energy – This includes both hydration and nutrition. Many people do not drink enough water on a daily basis. Figure out what makes the most sense for you in terms of drinking water and keep at it. In terms of nutrition, most experts agree that the quality of the food you eat is important. Generally, avoid processed foods, certain oils, and high fructose corn syrup. Find an eating plan that works for you.

Education – Use information to make an informed decision for your own health. Recognize that you might need to experiment to see what works for you.

Time – Use the 3Ps: patience, persistence, and progression. It will take some time to achieve your vision. Stay persistent and stick with your plan. Push yourself and progress if you want to continue improving. Your body wants to find a balance point and you may experience a plateau as a result. This is normal. Consider altering your strategy or applying the patience, persistence, and progression principles.

Stress Management – Recognize that stress is a part of life. Let go of the things you cannot control. Don’t allow stress to derail your progress.

Think through these aspects of STREETS and align them to your vision to set yourself on the pathway to health and fitness success.

Part 5


Wellness Roadmap Part 3

This is part three of a five-part series. You can find Part 1 here.

Now that your GPS has been set, it’s time to take it to the STREETS and determine exactly how you’re going to reach your destination. We’ll discuss the first three aspects: strategies, training, and rest.

Strategies – Set strategies that align with your vision. Along the way, you may need to make adjustments and adopt new strategies. Determine how you will use accountability to personalize your strategies. Consider enlisting the help of a personal trainer. Evaluate your habits and eliminate those that are not serving you.

Training – Choose the modalities that make the most sense for you based on your overall vision. If you want to maintain and build strength and improve mobility, endurance, balance and agility, training is the answer. Though you can lose weight without exercising, you may not lose it as quickly as you’d like or you may not have the final look you are seeking.

Rest – This includes recovering from workouts and sleep. Remember that rest is equally as important as the work. Resting also helps you to avoid injury.

On the next episode, we’ll finish up with the last four aspects of STREETS: energy, education, time, and stress management.

Part 4

Wellness Roadmap Part 2

This is part two of a five-part series you can find part 1 here.

With a GPS, you enter your destination and the GPS charts the path to your destination. For the Wellness Roadmap, we will do the same in three steps: Grounding, Personalizing, and Self-awareness.

Grounding – You must understand what you want to achieve. This involves making a firm commitment to your goal. What’s your vision? What’s your emotional why that ties you to this vision? Is it big enough to drive you past any obstacle that comes your way? It is the foundation of where you want to go and why you want to go there. Keep this in mind throughout your journey.

Personalizing – Identify your unique baselines and understand what they mean relative to your vision. Set milestones and SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, timely) goals. Know where you are and establish these little segments to give you success along the way.

Self-awareness – This includes physical self-awareness and understanding your limitations. Mental self-awareness is also critical, especially when it comes to accountability. It’s important to have a friend or personal trainer to help keep you moving toward your destination. If you need help with this, check out group training at https://40plusfitnesspodcast.com/training/.

Once you set your GPS, you have a foundation for why you’re doing what you’re going to do. This is the cornerstone of your health and fitness success.

Part 3

Wellness Roadmap Part 1

Throughout the next four episodes, we’ll be talking about the Wellness Roadmap, a concept that will provide a pathway to get you where you want to go on your health and fitness journey.

I'm sure you remember using a paper map, charting your path to reach your destination. The Wellness Roadmap is no different. You can use this technique to prepare for your next health and fitness trip.

In Episode 296, we’ll “set your GPS”. This means establishing your destination or what you’re trying to achieve. In Episodes 297 and 298, we’ll examine the “STREETS,” and determine what avenues you need to take to make sure you arrive at your health and fitness final destination. And finally, in Episode 299, we’ll discuss what happens once you reach your destination or goal.

Use this Wellness Roadmap to put together a plan for 2018 that guarantees your success! Let’s get started!

Part 2

December 25, 2017

Solving stress with Kraig Brockschmidt

Kraig Brockschmidt is the author of a new book entitled Solving Stress. In his book, Kraig explains that while stress is a consistent, persistent experience for most people. techniques and exercises can be used to help solve stress, not just manage it.

Kraig explains that stress occurs whenever there is a separation between what one expects and what occurs in reality. All people experience this. With any potential stressor, one will react. However, it is the nature of the reaction that one can control. The idea is to move the reaction away from anger and tension and toward relaxation and calmness in that critical moment.

Many of the popular stress management techniques offer immediate, but not long-term relief. These tips can be grouped into three categories within the Great Stress Exchange: Venting, Discipline, and Escape. These strategies buy time to avoid immediate and negative reactions to stressors.

A four-step process included in Kraig’s book involves the following prompts: stop, breathe, reflect, and choose. One should pause for 10 or 20 seconds and take a breath to put himself in-tune with the environment. Reflecting presents different options and choices, instead of feeling like a victim. Then an appropriate response can be chosen.

Kraig’s book includes a set of daily exercises to help people achieve a reaction of calmness. These exercises take about 20 minutes and include arm and shoulder rotations and neck rolls to help release stress and tension in the body. Meditation is also incorporated. By following these exercises, the brain is trained to know what relaxation feels like so that it can be triggered when a stressful situation arises. Over time, one’s stress threshold will rise and the intensity of a stressor that will push one over the edge will be very high.

To learn more about Solving Stress or to connect with Kraig Brockschmidt, visit http://www.kraigbrockschmidt.com. To facilitate his how practice, Allan is developing a checklist of exercises from Kraig's book.  To receive a  copy of this checklist of daily exercises, join the 40+ Fitness Podcast Facebook Group and post a photo of yourself with Solving Stress in hand.

Another episode you may enjoy

The 7 principles of stress with Ori Hofmekler

December 18, 2017

Training for an ironman with Diane Bergeron

Diane Bergeron is a visually-impaired athlete who appeared on the podcast previously and spoke about her intention to complete an Ironman competition. In this episode, she shares an update on her Ironman experience. After competing and unsuccessfully completing the race in 2015, Diane shares that she was recently successful in her quest.

In her most recent experience with the Ironman, she shares that just over 2,000 athletes competed. Her goal was to finish the race healthy, strong, and feeling uninjured. She was able to accomplish just that with a time of 16:15:57.

In order to achieve this goal, Diane invested a significant amount of time and effort into her training. First, she evaluated the 2015 race and what caused her to be unable to finish. She considered what factors she could she have changed. After realizing that the run was one of her weak areas, she made sure to focus on this in her training. As a result, Diane did two marathons and a lot of running to prepare for the next Ironman. She worked on the spin bike three times per week and ran three times per week. She also incorporated strength building with lighter weights.

To avoid overtraining and lessen the possibility of injury, Diane made it her personal policy to have at least one day off per week. This allowed her muscles to rest and recover. As a result, on the day after the Ironman, she experienced little pain and felt strong and healthy.

Looking forward, Diane is aiming to qualify for the Boston Marathon. She is also organizing the first five-person relay team of all blind athletes to compete in the Canadian Death Race, for which she will begin training in January.

Diane has a website launching in January called http://www.blindironvision.com. To connect with Diane, email her at blindironvision@gmail.com.


Another episode you may enjoy

Running injury free using the run walk run method with Jeff Galloway


December 11, 2017

Eating healthy on the road

It is that time of year when we get on the road to spend the holidays with family and friends.  Travel is a time of disruption and that makes remaining on a diet that much harder.  On this episode, I'm going to share some strategies to help you stay on track.

Driving vs flying

How you're getting to your destination can have a big effect on how you go about things. Are you driving or flying. When driving, you're going to have more flexibility on food choices. That can be a good thing if you take the time to plan ahead. You don't want to get into a situation where you're dependent on foods you find on the road. Convenience stores and fast food restaurants dominate the exits along the way and can be a huge temptation.

Take time to plan the route and pack food for the journey. I'll go into the what and how later, but for now, consider how long the drive will be and what meals you're going to want to have.

If you don't want to bring all the food you'll need, you should do some research. Are there healthy restaurants along your way? Know where they are so you can stop there rather than ending up at a fast food place. This will take some time, but it is a great way to make the journey a more enjoyable part of the trip.

When flying, you obviously won't be able to carry as much food. But the upside is that the trip will be much shorter. More and more airports are beginning to offer more healthy restaurants. A little time researching ahead of time will help you make the most of your choices during a layover.

Flexibility of location

Are you going to stay with family or in a hotel?

If you're staying with family, a quick stop at a grocery store might work well. Have a list of staples for your diet and pick them up on your way there. Offer to cook some of the meals so you know what is in the food you're eating.

Staying in a hotel? Do some research into the room amenities to see whether they have a refrigerator and/or kitchenette. This will let you cook many of your meals right there in your room saving you some money and helping you stay on track.

The food

I am a bit obsessed with my food packing. I have several lunchbox sized coolers that I can use to carry food with me. I can pop in a cooler pack and it will keep for hours. I'll also put in some of the food that frozen like bone broth and that will keep things cold for even longer.

Rather than go through all of it, I am going to share a video I did showing how I pack for a day (of work or travel).

December 4, 2017

11 Best home exercise equipment

When deciding what is the best home exercise equipment, you will need to consider three things (and I'd recommend doing them in order):

  1. What is your fitness goal? The equipment you own should complement your health and fitness goals. Otherwise, you're never going to use it.
  2. How much space do you have? Most of the equipment I recommend on this episode won't take up too much space (except maybe the rack). If space is really an issue, I would tell you to join a gym. Let them manage the space and all of them are going to have most of the equipment we'll discuss today.
  3. What is your budget? I'm a big fan of used equipment. So many people buy some equipment, all with good intentions, only to let it collect dust. They decide to get rid of it. You can often get good equipment for pennies on the dollar. They just want this reminder of what could have been out of their house. You win!

11 best home exercise equipment *

1) Resistance bands
Resistance bands are first on my list because they are so versatile.  You can take these with you when you travel and get a full body workout with just bodyweight and a set of resistance bands.

2) Jump rope
You probably didn't expect a jump rope to be on my list.  But for very little money, a jump rope is a great piece of equipment to have.  You can use the jump rope as a warm up, do some jump rope as a part of a circuit training workout, or even use it for a High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) session.

3) Mat
Yes, when working out, you're going to have to get on the ground from time to time.  Just do it, it is good for your mobility, balance, and core strength.

4) Dumbbell Set
Now is where you'll likely have to start spending some money. New dumbbells usually go for about $1 per pound. Look for used equipment at a store like Play It Again or look on Craigslist or local Facebook buy and sell groups.

A dumbbell set is also going to take up some space.  Some folks enjoy the adjustable types that don't take up much space, but I find them clunky and uncomfortable.

5) Foam roller and lacrosse ball
Yes, you should work on mobility as often as you can and having the right tools at home to do that can do wonders.

6) Adjustable bench
When I'm strength training, I find myself on an adjustable bench nearly half the time (okay, maybe more if you count the time I sit down to catch my breath after a set of heavy deadlifts).  But this one might fall closer to the line of “good to have” rather than “must have.”

7) Barbell and weights
Okay, now we're starting to get serious about building/maintaining muscle and getting stronger. That's a good thing! A good barbell and weight set will last you a lifetime. You can start with the cheap plastic covered concrete and work your way up. But I really think an investment in a decent Olympic sized set (Olympic relates to the size of the hole in the plates).

8) Power Rack
This will be the biggest purchase I'll recommend. I think power racks are among the best exercise equipment investments you can make. It allows you to push more weight with a safety bar to protect you. If you work out alone, and want to start pushing more weight (bench press, squat, overhead press, etc.), you should strongly consider getting a good power rack (mine even has a pull up bar).

Yes, this is a space hog, but I love it. It also gives me more utility from my exercise bands and TRX straps (later one the list).

9) Adjustable kettlebell
Unlike adjustable dumbbells, I do think adjustable kettlebells are worth it. They make owning a set of kettlebells less expensive and use much less space.

10) TRX Straps
The great thing about these straps is how they can make bodyweight exercises so much better. From beginner to advanced, there is almost an unending variety of exercises you can do. They are a bit pricey, so you may want to shop around for generic versions.

11) A tablet (Kindle Fire or iPad)
What? How can this be on a list of best exercise equipment? I have tablets on the list for a few reasons:

    1. If you're working with an online coach like me (https://40plusfitnesspodcast.com/train/), then your workout will be detailed online.
    2. You may want to look up an exercise video to get a feel for the proper form.
    3. You may use the tablet to log your workout sets and reps.
    4. You can use a timer on the tablet to keep up with your rest between sets or to time your interval workout.

Obviously going out and getting all of these at once can be quite an investment.  I recommend easing into it and picking up equipment as you go.  Spreading the investment out will also help you make sure you get the most use out of the equipment.  There's nothing worse than having bought something only to set it in the corner and never use it.

* Note: Each of the product links on this page is to an affiliate offer. I will get a small commission for each purchase you make. It won't cost you more and I've searched to find the best deal I could find.

Another episode you may enjoy

11 Tips for sticking with a workout regimen