Aug 302015
 

Each foot has 26 bones, 33 muscles, 31 joints and over 100 ligaments. That means that your two feet have over a ¼ of your body’s bones. You have 206 magnificent bones in your body!!!

Did you know that preventing mobility in your ankles or toes can cause premature atrophy in your feet, ankles, calves and shins? (Think: skates, shoes, boots, ski boots etc.) “So”, you might say but did you know that this atrophy can also affect your energy levels????

How often do you work your feet and lower legs barefoot? How often do you run around barefoot?

Simply by adding some pointing, flexing & circling of your ankles, you will get the blood flowing and begin to put a bounce in your step making you feel bouncy, energetic and younger…no kidding!

Do these simple exercises 2-3 times a week. You can incorporate some of them when you are brushing your teeth, combing your hair, doing the dishes or folding laundry. I’ve even done many of these while watching my kid’s hockey game!!!

  1. Tippy toe raises with straight and bent knees, do both feet and then one at a time (use a chair if needed)
  2. Stretch your gastrocnemius and soleus muscles (lower leg muscles)
  3. Side lying & standing leg lifts, click here for some examples
  4. Plies with heel raises

Not sure how to work the muscles in your feet or the rest of your body??

Join one of the great classes or inquire about personal training at Move Your Body Studio. You can email me tanya@moveyourbody.ca for further information. Check out the class schedule at www.moveyourbody.ca

best-skin-ever---chocolateWhen you are finished your workout- pamper and massage your feet with wonderful oils, scrubs and lotions from Living Libations. I use her energy dry brushes every day to get my lymphatic system moving and apply some of her essential oils to my brushes. Then I follow up with either coconut oil or Best Skin Ever –Seabuckthorn to keep my feet hopping all day long.

 

feet photos 015Here is a little toe stretching that I incorporate into my days during the winter when my feet are more likely to be in shoes and boots! It has done wonders at spacing out my toes and opening up my feet.

Tanya Morrison has been in the Health/Wellness and Fitness Field for over two decades.  She is the creator of the Busy Mama Detox which is a 12 week program that runs in January, April and September of each year. To find out more about this life changing program check out the testimonials and information at www.busymamadetox.com.

Tanya also teaches many different classes at Move Your Body Studio in Bobcaygeon, www.moveyourbody.ca and has written Healthy Snacks for Kids, Get the Skinny on Skinny Jeans & Living Vibrantly with Raw Goodness – Your Guide to Juicing & Blending.  You can get your PDF copy here

Busy Mama Detox … The fun begins September 6th, 2015….sign up today for $127 and for more details check out www.busymamadetox.com.

 

Sources and more workouts for YOU!!:

http://tanyamorrison.ca/chisel-your-inner-and-outer-thighs/

http://tanyamorrison.ca/saggy-butt-to-perky-butt-moves/

http://tanyamorrison.ca/butts-and-bellies-swimsuit-workout/

Tighten your butt with these SQUATS

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_bones_of_the_human_skeleton

Mar 012015
 

Saggy Butt to Perky Butt Moves

Saggy Butt to Perky Butt with these butt lifting and strengthening moves.

Remember, there is no such thing as spot reducing but you can target areas to tighten them up.

Here is a sample workout from Get the Skinny On Skinny Jeans – Saggy Butt Begone Workout

Do 15-30 reps 3x/week and for an extra bonus, add in at least 30 minutes of cardio- and in no time you will have a perky butt.  Follow Tanya’s trainer tips! Looking for more, check out the BUSY MAMA DETOX to get rid of even more fat cells!

 

 Trainer’s Tips for Glute Exercises!

  • Apply equal pressure when squeezing the ball with both legs
  • Focus on squeezing the ball from the inner thigh not at your knees
  • Pull your heels toward you without moving them. This fires up the hamstrings! FEEL IT??
  • Press your arms into the floor for extra triceps and back work
  • Wrap your tailbone between your legs
  • Lengthen your chin into your chest
  • Focus on your glutes and feel them working

 

Glute Lift and Glute Lift with Ball between knees

glute lift with ball

Continue reading »

Jan 252015
 

“My legs are so weak, I can’t squat, I’m giving up.”

“I can’t do push-ups, I’m such a failure.”

“I’m not losing any weight, why bother continuing.”

I’ll start on Monday.”

It’s only a thought and a thought can be changed – Louise Hay

What are you saying to yourself about your workouts or your potential desire to start working out??

Do any of the above thoughts ripple through your mind?

If so, you are sabotaging yourself and any results that you want…honey, you’ve got to flip your thoughts around and start practicing positive self-talk. You’ve got to believe in yourself.

Self-defeating talk leads to poor performance, says Michael Mantell, PhD in Behavior Science for the American Council on Exercise, and I will even add that it sabotages you from even starting.

trying quote

See if you can implement these thoughts into your mind…

“My legs are powerful and allow me to sit, stand, get on and off the toilet, in and out of my car.  I so appreciate my legs and I want to make them even stronger to carry me forward into the years that lie ahead. I’m going to do what I can to continue to strengthen my legs.”

What you tell yourself vibrates throughout your entire body. You are a human being not a failure.  Can you hold yourself in a push up position (on your knees/against a wall – have you tried every option?) and lower yourself 1cm? Then yes, you are beginning to do a push-up.  Instead of giving up, break the exercise or task into its smallest part and start from there. Trust me, we do a lot of this in class…it’s not about the end result..it’s about the journey.

A scale doesn’t measure the weight of your memories or your daily stress, the smiles you display and the lives that you touch, the hours that you sleep, the level of your hormones, the brightness of your future…it just measures your physical mass when you step upon the scale. And for all these reasons and many more, we don’t need a scale to tell us whether to continue to exercise or not……dig deeper than the scale and know that you are performing miracles in your body every time you do something healthy.

The present moment holds the power….right here, right now, sit up straight, take a breath and feel the energy travel up and down your spine, connect with your “tingle”, smile, maybe even squeeze your butt cheeks or stand up and stretch.  Stop thinking that you have to commit to an hour…it’s always the simple things that add up….then you will be wanting to spend more time moving because you become inspired by how this simple exercise makes you feel.  I always tell my clients that the hardest thing is starting, the hardest thing is getting to class…but once you are here…there are never any regrets.

You are stronger than any excuse

You are more powerful in the present moment

You are a magnificent human being capable of magnificence

Sending you the energy to believe in yourself,

Tanya

Tanya Morrison has been in the Health/Wellness and Fitness Field for over two decades.  She is the creator of the Busy Mama Detox which is a 12 week program that runs in January, April and September of each year. To find out more about this life changing program check out the testimonials and information at www.busymamadetox.com. Tanya also teaches many different classes at Move Your Body Studio in Bobcaygeon, www.moveyourbody.ca and has written Healthy Snacks for Kids, Get the Skinny on Skinny Jeans & Living Vibrantly with Raw Goodness – Your Guide to Juicing & Blending.  You can get your PDF copy here

Feb 282014
 

Bad Posture leads to Thoracic Kyphosis – symptoms & remedies

I know that for many, losing weight is a primary reason for working out, but I would like to think that exercising is also for maintaining your health and prevention of disease!

During my classes, I always infuse proper technique with an emphasis on posture.

I don’t know about you but I’d like to be able to raise my hands above my head, wash my hair, pull a sweater over my head, and breathe properly in the years to come!!

So, here’s a little about thoracic kyphosis, how it can affect you and what to do about it. Also, prevention is key, so by doing these suggestions now you can admire your wonderful posture for years to come.

What is Excessive Thoracic Kyphosis?

Excessive thoracic kyphosis (ETK) is a disproportional forward rounding or curvature of the middle and upper back. As we round our spine during activities like sitting at our computer or using our handheld electronic devices, reading, making meals, driving etc. we are all affected by this extremely common musculoskeletal imbalance.

If your shoulders are rounding forward, your head jutting forward or your spine is rounding (akin to having a large fish on the end of a flexible fishing rod) then this is leading you to ETK or at the very least thoracic hyphosis.

Or perhaps you overpronate causing your feet to collapse inward causing the ankles to roll in and the legs to rotate toward the midline of your body, therefore the pelvis rotates forward – this causes the lower back to overarch and the middle/upper back to round forward so that the body stays balanced.

You can see the chain effect of your posture and how hip or shoulder etc. pain/problems can be caused from the feet or other body parts out of alignment.  I always love looking for the ROOT cause of problems and not the SYMPTOMS! (Pain medication is not going to fix this problem in the long run!!)

proper posture

Proper Posture

thoracic posture 2

Incorrect Posture – rounded shoulders, head forward

 How it Can affect you

Symptoms of ETK include:

  • Aches and pains
  • Breathing problems
  • Limited function of our arms, shoulders, neck
  • Impaired athletic performance
  • Gastrointestinal upsets
  • Increased mental stress

What can you do to prevent ETK or relieve current symptoms?

Remedies include:

  • Corrective exercises
  • Dietary changes
  • Breathing practices
  • Relaxation
  • Life Coaching

Corrective Exercises

Self myofascial release techniques are very effective for decreasing restrictions in the fascia and for improving posture. During Move Your Body’s Core Conditioning and Pilates classes we use tennis balls and foam rollers for myofascial release!

Tennis Balls on Upper Back – Promotes extension in the thoracic spine

Place each tennis ball on either side of the spine at the bottom of your shoulder blades with a pillow under your head for support. Bring your arms across your chest and hug yourself.  Feel the pressure of the tennis balls working to release the pressure (10-15 seconds), then move the balls to another spot and continue.

Stretches

Think of how often your fingers and your biceps are flexed (think driving, typing, cooking etc.).  With these muscles shortened (flexed)  and not properly stretched (extended), you may overtime, not be able to fully extend your muscles in your arms therefore causing the forearms to pull the shoulders blades forward causing the rib cage to drop forward leading to thoracic kyphosis.

hand palm down stretch

Palms on Floor Stretch

 

Kneeling, place your palms face down on the floor with finger tips pointing towards your knees.  Press fingertips into the floor and feel the stretch in the wrist, elbows and shoulders as you lengthen your arms and pull your shoulder blades down on your back. Hold 30-60 seconds.

palms lifted stretch

Palms on Floor Stretch #2

As above, now lift your palms off the floor leaving your fingers extended on the floor and feel the stretch.  You can circle your thumbs both ways 10x then peel your hands off the floor.

Forearm Stretch – all of these exercises will stretch your forearms

palms up stretch

Make a fist and put the back of your fists together then put the back of your hands on the floor maintaining this position.  Place your thumbs on the floor and then flex and extend your fingers whilst keeping your arms extended.

 Adding these 3 simple exercises into your day can make a world of difference to your posture, and increase the flexibility in your shoulders and arms. Not doing them yourself, join the classes at Move Your Body Studio!

Dietary changes

Increase your consumption of vegetables, fruits, and organics to reduce the inflammation in your body. Take probiotics and/or enzymes to improve the health of your gastrointestinal tract. Please see the many blogs I have written on healthy eating.

Here is one dietary change that may work for you if you are a sweet freak like me!

Breathing and Relaxation Techniques

Most of us breath very shallowly so breathing does require some consciousness!  Diaphragmatic breathing helps to mobilize the ribcage, strengthen the diaphragm, supply blood to the organs, promote relaxation and decrease stress!!

Breathing problems can result from this rounded posture because the rib cage becomes restricted and interferes with the diaphragm’s ability to contract and relax.

Lie on your back with your hands on your rib cage and head supported if needed. Breath in and out through your nose focusing on expanding your ribs and pushing your ribs into your hands.  Hold your breath for 5 seconds, and then exhale slowly. Do 10-15 breaths daily.

Life Coaching Techniques

Mental stress can manifest as physical pain, breathing problems, dizziness, head/back aches, skin problems and gastrointestinal issues. Become conscious of any pain that you are feeling and if there is anything that is triggering it. From that point of consciousness, you can begin to rectify the stressors and put effective strategies into place. Become your own detective for what is happening in your life and how it is affecting you.

Need life coaching assistance, email info@moveyourbody.ca and talk with Tanya about a Healthy Life Plan.

In closing

So, applying these few simple exercises/techniques done on a regular basis will help to prevent improper posture and/or to alleviate any current pain that you may be experiencing in your neck, shoulders, arms, hips or perhaps any breathing issues or stress issues that you currently have (or don’t want!- prevention is KEY!)

arms up proper posture

proper posture allows for your arms to reach over your head

improper posture arms overhead

improper posture – rounded shoulders/head forward – arms cannot be lifted above head. Try it out and see for yourself!!

Happy Standing,

Tanya

 

Sources:

Excessive Thoracic Kyphosis by Justin Price MA, IDEA Fitness Journal Jan 2013

Move Your Body’s Core Conditioning and Pilates Classes, see www.moveyourbody.ca click calendar for class dates and times.