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The 3-Breath Practice To Melt Chaos

by Kathy Smith

Screen Shot 2016-07-05 at 10.17.09 AM

Sometimes, it’s easy to allow habits to control the day. There’s no doubt about it….Habits are powerful.

There’s a degree of internal discipline that’s needed in order to break out of the shell of habits in order to discover the wonderment and peace that surrounds you.

But that discipline can be as simple as a 3-breath practice.

So next time you’re feeling stuck or chaotic, there’s a simple but transformational practice that only takes 10 seconds, but will put you in-tune with the magic of the stillness of the present moment.

Here’s what to do…

1. Close your eyes, and relax your mind.

2. Let go of the chaotic story you’re telling yourself

3. Pause, and take three breaths. Take enough time in-between each breath to reconnect with where you are.

The beauty of this practice is that it creates a sacred space in your mind where you find yourself.

You drop the struggle.

You find a calm energy.

Before you begin the day, and you’re still curled up in bed, look through the window and begin your morning with this 3-breath practice. Drop the anxiety of the day ahead, and lay there…being exactly where you are.

And, whenever you find yourself making a gap in your mind and feel the stress seeping in, try the 3-breath practice.

Let fear, stress, and anxiety be like blowing a bubble….in an instant, you can pop it, and make room for serenity.

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.

By Collage Video | | fitness, goals, Kathy Smith, story, stress, Weekly Blog, Wellness | 0 comments | Read more

5 Rules For Optimal Eating In 2016

by Kathy Smith

Most people tend to get caught in a vicious cycle of dieting and then blowing the diet. It usually begins something like this…You’re unhappy with the way you look and feel. You seek a diet that promises instant weight loss through complete control of what, when, and how you eat. It feels safe, because you know exactly what you have to do to reach your goal. Soon enough you discover that you just can’t stick to it..and you end up right back where you started, with the exact same eating pattern that got you wanting to go on a diet in the first place.

And so the cycle continues.

The problem here is that those “diets” treat the dieter like a machine that can be programmed. But the truth is that eating well has to take into account the food’s less scientific side.

You may have already had an experience similar to this one. Maybe you, like millions of others, white-knuckled a liquid detox. If you did, then it won’t come as news to hear that the number-one reason people give up such diets is not because they reach their target weight. It’s because they couldn’t stand to go for so long without “real food.” Anyway, it’s simple human nature to rebel against such rigidity imposed from the outside. being told what we’re supposed to like, and be satisfied with it, will eventually create its opposite intended effect.

Most plans don’t take into account what food really means to us. They don’t consider how the flavor and color and texture and temperature and presentation of food can give us so much pleasure. They don’t consider how food is intimately entwined with our social and cultural customs. They don’t consider how food and the environment in which we eat comfort us. They don’t consider how eating foods that you don’t like leave you unsatisfied.

Eating well has to be seen as an ongoing process in your life. So in 2016, add these 5 eating habits into your routine for optimal eating:

SKIP SUGARY DRINKS

Liquid calories are often the most dangerous, especially when it comes to sugary drinks. That’s because liquid sugars hit our liver even faster than solid foods – and the faster fructose hits our liver, the higher the chances that the liver will convert it to fat. That’s why sodas containing high fructose corn syrup are to be avoided at all costs. But even freshly-squeezed fruit juice can wreak havoc on our blood sugar because of its high Glycemic Index, a system that calculates foods’ effect on our blood sugar. So while orange juice is a great source of Vitamin C, it’s completely stripped of the fiber found in whole oranges, which means when we drink it, a blood sugar spike is right around the corner.

Nothing beats water, of course – but if you’d like to “jazz up” your daily water intake, try infusing it with some fruit or veggies. Sliced lemons, limes, cucumbers, and even strawberries can lend some flavor to a pitcher of water without adding sugar and calories. Herbal tea is another great option – and if you’re craving juice, try cutting it with sparkling water so that you can still enjoy the fruity sweetness without putting yourself back on the blood sugar roller coaster.

AVOID HAPPY HOUR FOR 30 DAYS

While the occasional cocktail is fine from time to time, try steering clear of alcohol for 30 days. It’s a source of empty calories (there’s a reason they call it a “beer belly”), and it can wreak havoc on your metabolism. Not to mention that it’s harder to resist the temptation of unhealthy foods when there’s some alcohol in your system. So for now, skip that happy hour and use that time for a workout instead!

BONUS Reason: Alcohol can prevent fat burning by up to 73%!

When you do decide to indulge in a cocktail, it’s important to understand that your choices – right down to the mixer – can determine whether or not you’re adding dozens of empty calories to your day. Traditional margaritas are among the worst offenders, packing a whopping 700+ calorie count, and often much of those calories are coming from high-fructose-corn-syrup-laden sweet & sour mix. Put some salt around the rim and you’ve treated yourself to some additional next-day bloat. Instead, try a vodka with club soda and just a squirt of cranberry juice for a touch of sweetness.

FILL UP ON THE F-WORD

Chances are good that this isn’t the first time you’ve been told fiber is good for you. Grandmothers have implored us to eat more veggies, fruit, and whole grains for centuries. But an onslaught of new research and flashy media bites have given the classic f-word a sexy makeover. With yogurts, cereals and even chocolate bars boasting “added fiber” on their labels, fiber is suddenly the must-have diet product of the moment. And for good reason.

Because fiber helps you to absorb fewer calories by escorting them out of your digestive system before those calories can be transformed into fat, some diet plans consider high-fiber foods to be “freebies” – things you can eat in unlimited amounts. If you’re on a diet plan that tracks nutritional points, for example, these “freebies” might fall into the 0 point category. This is certainly true of many veggies, especially of the dark green, leafy variety. There’s no reason to practice portion control when it comes to kale.

TIME YOUR CARBS

Timing when you eat your carbs throughout the day can mean the difference between fat loss and fat gain. Here’s why…. When you exercise, sugar is shuttled to your muscles, instead of being stored as fat. And, exercise unleashes your muscle’s glucose receptors. So the trick is to eat most of your carbs in the hours after exercising. Remember… on days when you don’t work out, even a 10-Min HIIT workout or walk can help you process carbs more efficiently.

Here’s a ballpark range of what’s appropriate, safe and effective, depending on your level of activity –

0-50g Carbs Per Day: If you’re trying to lose a lot of water weight in a couple days, cut your carbs below 50/day.
50-100g Carbs Per Day: If you’re staying in this range, chances are good that you’ll achieve healthy weight loss.
150-300g Carbs Per Day: Even though this is represents the low end of a typical American’s daily carb intake, the truth is that this number can lead to gradual weight gain (depending on the types of carbs you’re eating, and your activity level).

STOP GRAZING

Instead of grazing throughout the day, eat a smaller meal or snack every 3-4 hours. The weight loss math is simple: Three 400-calorie meals and two 200-calorie snacks equals 1,600 calories a day. Generally speaking, that’s a good daily caloric intake for weight loss, but of course these numbers vary depending on your body type and activity level.

The benefits of eating smaller portions of healthy foods every 3-4 hours include:

  • Stabilized insulin levels
  • Higher metabolism
  • Preserved lean muscle mass
  • Fewer mood swings
  • Helps control cravings
  • Prevents overeating

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.

5 Reasons To Go On A Walk

by Kathy Smith

1. You can burn calories AND enjoy the scenery.

Here’s a little-known fact: A fast walk (at a 12-minute-mile pace) burns more calories than a slow, 9-minute-mile job. That’s because in a fast-paced walk, your body incorporates more muscles, thus burning more calories. And walking techniques like the “heel-toe-push” and “walking the line” increase this calories-burning potential even more.

2. You can de-stress AND boost your immune system.

Walking can be a powerful antidote to stress, because it requires the physical involvement of the entire body combined with a relaxed mental focus. It lowers the levels of adrenaline and cortisol flowing through the body, leaving you in a happier, less stressful state. And it doesn’t stop there: The body responds to aerobic workouts (like walking) by producing additional white blood cells – our strongest form of dense, helping to prevent a range of illnesses from the common cold to more serious health concerns, including tumors and viruses.

3. Heart rate goes up, blood pressure goes down.

Cardiovascular activity temporarily increases your heart rate, helping you to burn calories and protect the health of your heart. And there’s more: a daily walk can do more to lower your blood pressure than blood pressure medications can. Since walking increases and maintains a steady arterial pressure during the exercise, it’s an excellent way to keep your circulation (and the rest of your system) in good working order.

4. You will improve your memory and cognitive processes.

Do you ever forget a name, an appointment, or where you left your keys? Walking will help. Not only does it improve the connectivity of synaptic circuits in the brain, but walking also targets specific areas of brain function, including “executive control tasks,” which helps in problem solving. And you can enjoy all these brain boosting benefits from the comfort of you home: Try an indoor walking workout, like my Fat Burning Walking DVD, a fun and unique routine designed to zap belly fat while strengthening the entire body.

5. Walking keeps you – and your knees! – going longer and stronger.

A lack of exercise doesn’t give your knees a chance to get stronger, and overuse can sometimes wear them out too soon. But walking strikes a sweet spot in the middle – strengthening knees AND preserving them for years to come, while improving your overall endurance. The Human Body has an amazing capacity to adapt to increased levels of physical exertion, even if that “exertion” is at a comparatively low level. Walking improves both the muscular endurance and cardiovascular endurance, allowing you to walk farther, faster, while becoming healthier and fitter than ever before. For a complete at-home walking workout package that’s gentle on the knees and effective on calorie-burning endurance, try the Walk Off The Pounds Kit!

When you fully step into the walking experience, you can take back control of your health, and start feeling more energetic and alive every day!

It’s True…You Can Create Flat Abs By WALKING!

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.

By Collage Video | | exercise, fitness success, Kathy Smith, story, Weekly Blog, Wellness | 0 comments | Read more

The #1 Overlooked Muscle To Help You Look Slim….Instantly!

by Kathy Smith

If there’s one area of the body most of us overlook, it’s the back. Naturally, we focus on toning the muscles we can see — our abs, legs, arms, chest, and shoulders. People don’t go around saying, “Hey! You’ve got a terrific back!” But in reality, no muscle group deserves more attention.

Think of your body as a house. Long before you start decorating, you’ve got to build a strong foundation; otherwise the structure will cave in. The foundation for your body’s strength comes from your abdominal and lower back muscles. If they’re weak, your body isn’t going to hold up. At that point, the decorating — sculpted arms and shoulders, for instance, won’t matter.

You’re especially prone to weakening your back muscles by spending a lot of time sitting at a desk or driving a car. In those poor-posture-prone positions, your back muscles tend to stretch out. If ignored, they’ll eventually lose strength. However, if you strengthen them, you’ll counter-act the tendency to slouch. You’ll stand tall, look slimmer, and project a confident image. Try out the superman exercise below to help strengthen your upper, middle, and lower back.

 Superman

superman

How to do it:

  • Lie face down on the floor. Keep the ribs and pubic bone on the floor, pulling your navel up off the floor.
  • Lift your chest off the floor slightly, keeping your core firmly engaged, and extend the left arm and right leg off the floor.
  • Return to the starting position, and switch sides.

Strengthening your back muscles in order to improve your posture will help you boost your confidence. Standing tall projects to the world that you feel good about yourself, and it will make you look 10 pounds thinner…not to mention a few years younger! As we age, we need to pay more attention to our posture. By making a conscious effort to stand up straight, you fight the effects of gravity on the body. You’ll look firmer, more toned, and younger.

Medically speaking, perfecting your posture makes sense. Years of slouching can weaken your bones and put a strain on your internal organs. But when the spine is properly aligned, you’ll find you’re breathing more deeply, sitting more comfortably, and walking with more vitality.

Here’s a head-to-toe demonstration of perfect posture:

posture

 Make it happen!
Kathy

Kathy

 

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