Fitness…Peace…and Gratitude

In my world of constant FITNESS it was a great vacation to take off a few days and just BE with some really great friends.  It was a nice way to celebrate Mitch’s birthday and celebrate we did.  Yesterday, when the last of the friends left, I planned on getting back to work, but both my afternoon clients were under the weather.  I went to plan B and got myself in the pool for a nice long swim.  I headed back in the pool about 2 weeks ago, after a long fall/winter kept me out.  It feels AMAZING to be back in that water and what I lack in running this time of year, I make up for in the pool.

So this morning, I am thankful for my awesome friends.  Thankful that Blaze is still hanging in there and was able to be with all the friends.  Thankful to Ellen for subbing my classes so I could vaca in peace.  Thankful for weather that was PERFECT this weekend.  And especially thankful that everyone is back home safe and sound.

All classes at TFC are back on schedule today.  I will be at the gym for 11:30 SilverSneakers, 6pm cardio mix and 7pm Yoga/Pilates hybrid mix (or what I call peaceandfitness). 

Happy anniversary to Deb and Jeff.  You two have been together for a lifetime.  Thanks, again, to Ellen for subbing my classes.  I am off to walk Blaze and clean out spam from this site (right after I watch the wedding trends segment on the Today Show) Make it a great day, and if YOU have access to a swimming pool check the water….swimming might be just what YOUR body is craving!!


Gym Class(es)

English: Monday Morning :: duo pop & Folk Fran...
English: Monday Morning :: duo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I will NOT be at the gym for classes this morning, as Mitch and I enjoy one more morning with great friends.  Just because I am not there, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be 🙂  Ellen will be subbing both the 8:30 cardio and 11:30 SilverSneakers class…I will be back tomorrow for all classes.  (Trust me, I will need to sweat out a weekend of partying!)  It’s been a great weekend enjoying great friends!  A shout out to Mother Nature who gave us Chamber of Commerce weather.  Thanks, Mama N.

Make it a great Monday.  Can’t believe its almost May already.  Crazy…..

Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday
Happy Birthday (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Up and out early this morning.  Time to start celebrating.  Happy birthday to my better half.  You’ll always be young to me, Mitch.  We have so much to celebrate.  Cheers!!!  And let the games begin…

The birthday boy!

Still Going Plant Strong at 98!

English: "V" icon as as symbol for v...
English: "V" icon as as symbol for vegetarianism/veganism. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to listen to an incredible interview with a 98 year old cardiovascular surgeon.  He grew up on an  farm but has spent the last half of his life living on a vegan diet.  Given his field of expertise, he had become increasingly concerned about what animal products or as he refers to them, “flesh foods,” were doing to others and his own arteries.  Originally concerned about not getting enough protein, he soon came to understand that our society has led us to believe we need wayyyyyyyy more protein than we actually do.  The only supplement he takes is B12 and he claims to be able to do everything at 98 that he could always do.  He did retire from practice…at 95 because he felt it was a good age to kick back a bit.  He does, however, still mow his own lawn.  As many still like to argue the dangers of an all plant-based diet, it’s always great to hear a testimonial like this.

And here’s the beauty of the internet.  Simply typing this entry brought up the very video I couldn’t find in my own mail….If you are interested in watching this guy (he is 98 so I grant you it’s not THE most exciting presentation) just click the article below.

Remember as you move through your Vegan (Feast) Thursday, it is also a day to Pay it Forward.  Even a simple smile can go a long way to start a ripple effect.  Let’s all get out there and shed some kindness.

How Will You Celebrate Kindness?

Pay It Forward
Pay It Forward (Photo credit: JD | Photography)


Thanks to Mitch’s company, Valassis, for sending out an email informing their employees that tomorrow is National Pay it Forward Day.  This is a holiday that focuses on passing kindness around.  That’s a holiday that certainly should be practiced by ALL.  How we partake in this celebration is quite simple; You do something kind or generous for someone who will then simply repay the kindness by passing it forward to another individual.  The goal is to form a ripple effect that can spread across the universe.  While it is recommended that you can do something m like pay for someone’s coffee or for the person behind you at a toll you can also do things that don’t cost a cent.  A simple gesture like letting someone get in front of you at the grocery store, or in traffic can go a long way, especially for someone that is in a rush.  If someone says “thank you,” for your kindness or generosity, tell them no thanks needed, just pass it forward.


Sure, it would be nice to think that everyone could live this way every day, but sadly that’s not everyone’s reality.  One day, however, could be the start of a revolution.  I wanted to post this today to give you some time to mull over the many small (and possibly big) ways you can take part in the giving, tomorrow.  Please feel free to share what your thinking.*  As you move through your  today, keep in mind that it’s never to early to start celebrating a holiday, and practice makes perfect!


 *Remember that your comments will not appear until I check back in to “approve” them.  Trust me, this is for your benefit as I get a lot of spam and don’t ever want you to end up clicking an inappropriate link! 



































Back to the Basics. YES!

Personal Training Outdoors - Lunges Category:F...
Personal Training Outdoors - Lunges Category:Fitness_training Category:Personal_training (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When it comes to fitness, just like all other aspects of my life, I have never been the “bells and whistles,” type.  In fact, I am completely the opposite.  Sure, there are many fancy machines, and lots of awesome apparatus to help one get fit, but I have never been personally moved by them.  30 plus years ago, when I started teaching fitness, it was before the word AEROBICS was coined, and we taught something called TEAM TIME.  It was simply about a group of people moving to music.  Looking back, while it was incredibly primitive, it worked about as well as any aerobic session I have ever taught.  When I became a big believer in women doing strength training, all believed we needed was ourselves…and maybe a set or two of dumbbells.  Even when I took my Pilates training, it was right there on the mat, with no apparatus, that I enjoyed the practice most.  Sure Pilates equipment is beautiful, and for those that can afford it, it is wonderful, efficient and effective, but by no means necessary.

Fast forward a few decades and I am happy to see that going back to basics is the fitness trend for this year.  Strength training, in particular body-weight weight training, is way up on the  the list of the top 10 trends for 2013.  Exercise for seniors is on that list along with exercise for children, personal training, core and functional training and small group personal training.  This is a great option for people that can’t afford (or just don’t want to spend) the money on a trainer, but desire the guidance, structure and knowledge that one can provide.  I have always thought of my fitness classes as large group personal training but clearly small groups or couples/trios can get much more individualized workouts.  I feel good about this year’s list and am happy to see that crazy fads are NOT on that list.   Fitness can be fancy and trendy but as with all things in life, fads don’t often last….and fitness should definitely be a forever thing.

I, like so many from my generation, am deeply saddened by the much too soon passing of Richie Havens.  It’s near impossible to say the word Woodstock and not immediately conjure up images of him strumming his guitar and singing about freedom.  I was lucky to have had the privilege of meeting him on several occasions when I worked for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.  He did beautiful things for children and was a great friend of the organization.  He will always be remembered as an Icon for OUR time.  RIP, Richie Havens and thanks for your many contributions in music and in the world.

Happy Earth Day to YOU or This Land is (Not Just) Your Land

Earth Day 2012 mosaic 4
Earth Day 2012 mosaic 4 (Photo credit: Images by John 'K')

Yesterday we celebrated Kyle’s 26th birthday,


Today we all celebrate OUR  43rd Earth Day.



Earth Day is an annual day on which events are held worldwide to demonstrate support for environmental protection. It is now coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network, and is celebrated in more than 192 countries every year.  The name and concept of Earth Day was pioneered by John McConnell  in 1969 at a UNESCO Conference in San Francisco. He proposed March 21, 1970, the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere. This day of nature’s equipoise was later sanctioned in a Proclamation signed by Secretary General U Thant at the United Nations. A month later a separate Earth Day was founded by United States Senator Gaylord Nelson as an environmental teach-in first held on April 22, 1970. While this April 22 Earth Day was focused on the United States, an organization launched by Denis Hayes, who was the original national coordinator in 1970, took it international in 1990 and organized events in 141 nations. Numerous communities celebrate Earth Week, an entire week of activities focused on environmental issues.


Personally, I believe in that quote about borrowing the earth from our children.  With that in mind, around our home, every day is Earth Day.  However, though we compost, recycle, reuse and re-purpose, Earth Day always reminds me to try just a little harder.


With respect to our environment and the generations to come, I hope you will do at least one new thing today that you can commit to doing daily.  It doesn’t have to be fancy.  If you don’t already have a recycling bin, call your city and ask for one.  Stop using plastic bottles and get yourself a reusable cup/mug/bottle that you enjoy using.  Use less paper.  Start a compost (it’s truly amazing how quickly the right stuff breaks down in there!) Honestly, the list of things you can do to make this planet a little healthier is endless.


We have only one Earth.  Let’s be proud to pass it on to the next generations. Hoping you can get outside today and enjoy this earth.  Great place to get some peaceandfitness on!  Happy Earth Day to you.





Happy Birthday, Kyle Zipp!

Happy #26 to you Kyle.  You have always made Dad and I incredibly proud and that pride grows with each passing day.  This picture was taken the day you left to move to Tampa and that move sure turned out to be one great decision on your part, but you always make great decisions!!!  I know you got the best birthday present possible when Nicole said “YES,” earlier this month….Enjoy YOUR day and know how much you are loved.  Lots of great times to look forward to!!!!  XOXOXO

Rub it Out

Massage in Frankfurt, Germany
Massage in Frankfurt, Germany (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

35 different studies were done in an effort to determine the single most effective way to treat muscle the muscle soreness and decreased muscle function that occurs after rigorous strength training.  4 different types of treatment were compared–cryotherapy (immersion in cold water), massage, stretching and low-intensity exercise.  The only one of the 4 therapies to really prove effective for the negative effects of the muscle damage was massage!  There was little evidence to support the use of cryotherapy and NO evidence to support the use of stretching or low-intensity exercise.  I was a bit surprised by these results which I saw posted in American Fitness Magazine.  Don’t get me wrong, after 30 plus years of almost daily exercise, I am a huge buy into massage.  It’s always good for everything that ails me (thanks, Mitch) but I also know how good it feels to stretch when my muscles are sore.  Perhaps it’s doing nothing for the actual muscle damage, but it sure feels great.  I also have to imagine that cryotherapy has it’s benefits, despite what these studies revealed.  Thinking the cold has to reduce inflammation and at least make the muscles feel less sore, even if ineffective inrepairing strength.  But studies are done for good reason, and this one clearly shows massage is the ticket!