Healthy Lifestyle Tips

Do you know deep down that if you got cancer, you would radically change your life? In a very private area of your mind– do you think it would be too hard to live a healthier life without some major catastrophe initiating the changes you know you would make when you have to?

I think there is a lot of wisdom available from people who have waited to have cancer before initiating changes. One comment I hear over and over again is “…well– if I had known these changes were so possible to do… and I would feel so well: mind, body and soul wise, I would have started to make these changes before getting cancer!”

In Kelly A. Turner’s book: Radical Remission she notes 9 key factors for health, and details the latest scientific research on each topic. They are in no particular ranking order:

1. Radically changing your diet.

2. Taking control of your health.

3. Following your intuition.

4. Using herbs and supplements.

5. Releasing suppressed emotions.

6. Increasing positive emotions.

7. Embracing social support.

8. Deepening your spiritual connection.

9. Having strong reasons for living.

Let’s consider initiating a change or two, before any possible catastrophe. We’ll feel glad we did.


Being in good health counts for a lot when the unexpected happens.

“You need surgery.” your doctor says to you  “Soon.” he adds.

“Let’s go on a last minute bike trip to Holland and recreate the trip we took in 1984!” suggests your friend.

“Grandma, can you walk a 5k race with me next weekend for my school?”  your adorable grandchild asks you with excitement.

Could we do it these thing when we are out of shape, overweight or improperly nourished and hydrated? Probably…but would you want to repeat it? How sore will you be? Are you likely to curse the fact that you didn’t go into the activity or surgery healthier?

Sadly, many people only decide to get fit or eat a healthier diet once there is no other choice. Let’s not wait for a cancer diagnosis before learning about the benefits of a healthy diet. Let’s not wait until we have a month to go before that bike trip before starting to get in shape.

Recently, I had major surgery. I have been away from my blog and I have missed it, although I had to take care of myself and needed to protect some energy. Something had to be put aside temporarily and it was my blog, social media and some other writing projects.

I am back though – and very, very grateful for having adopted a healthy lifestyle BEFORE I needed to depend on my strong muscles, healthy immune system and my realistic and positive mindset to get me through the last few months.

YAY for preventative health!!

About Exercise and Weight-Loss

Do you think that exercise is the key component in weight-loss?

I spent most of my life feeling sure the answer to that question was YES. I don’t think that anymore. I will tell you why I changed my thinking on this.

Firstly, as a certified personal trainer, I want to be clear here: I feel exercise is beneficial to our human bodies for many, many reasons. For a primary goal of weight-loss though? Uh…nope, not so much. I have heard some say that 90% of losing weight is related to the food we eat and only 10% the exercise. The lowest I have ever heard is 75%/25%…which is still a high % vote for getting your eating and calorie intake under control as a first priority.

Scientific research has shown that people who have a higher rate of loss in the first two weeks of their new lifestyle plan are more likely to stick with it.

So – how can we have the best start? I’d say focus on the food.

When I took my personal trainer training, my pro-trainer told me something very important: For a primary goal of weight-loss: work out as hard as you can, for as long as you can UNTIL you need more fuel (food) to sustain you. People often over award themselves with food after their intense exercise, adding more calories than were burned during their workout. Hmmm.. so what then? How do we get started loosing the extra weight if it’s not by intense exercise like cardio spin, rhumba and resistance training?

Let’s remind ourselves that time is finite. So is money. So is energy. We need to decide how to spend those limited resources. If weigh-loss is your primary goal, I would recommend that you start the process by spending:

a) your money on good quality, highly nutritious food,

b) your time on preparing that food, along with self-monitoring your consumption, and

c) your energy on addressing your life’s priorities while factoring in a solid 8 hour sleep.

Once all three of these things are factored into your life as habits….then add exercise. Simple walking is the best start. Add activities slowly…and make sure you remember what my pro-trainer said above.

So, to follow the three steps above, spend your precious money on buying highly nutritious foods instead of a gym membership. Right now, I am reading Joel Fuhrman’s: Super Immunity book and he will help you learn which foods supply the best nutrients to our bodies.

My Weight Loss Story

Over the last 25 years, I have gained and lost about 50 pounds three different times. The first time was after my first pregnancy in 1988 (I call this my happy gain). The second time was in 1995 during the year my young husband was dying of cancer (my sad gain). And the third was during a second marriage filled with various kinds of troubles (my traumatic gain).

I was a yo-yo’er and my emotions dictated my body weight reality. I also had a perfect storm of personal characteristics which led to the constant up and downs: perfectionism, ruthless self-judgement, a victim mentality, and feelings of unworthiness.

The good news is that in 2006 I chose to end the cycle. I lost my last 50 and have changed for good. How do I know this? I changed the way I think among other things.

I learned many things about food, fuel, health, behaviour, attitudes and habits. Little by little I learned a great deal about me and about the world around me and chose to move towards health and happiness and away from fighting a constant war with my weight.

Over the next few weeks, I will blog about some of the truths I have uncovered in my journey to live in all the dimensions of health. It has lead to a stable body weight and all sorts of other riches – many of which I hadn’t even imagined.

Some topics will include:

– About Sleep and Weight Loss

Weight-Loss Pearls of Wisdom I

1. If you trip on the first two stairs, don’t throw yourself down the rest of the flight.

2. Waste it, or waist it.

3. If ya sorta do it, it sorta works.

4. It’s about being healthy, not skinny.

5. Engage in the pursuit of health whether you are gaining, on a frustrating plateau, or losing body weight. You are worth it.

6. Never reprimand yourself or feel shame about slip-ups. This is worse than the slip-up.

7. Nothing tastes as good as self-pride feels.

8. Dive into learning about sugar, fibre, water, alcohol, in-activity – like your life depends on it.