“Are you Tense Right This Minute?”

Are you feeling stressed right now? Let me give you a quick tip…

There’s an old Chinese proverb that says;

‘Tension is who you think you should be, and relaxation is who you are’

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So what I’ve noticed is, for instance, when someone loses a loved one; they think that the more stress, the more distress and the more sadness that they show – the more love that they are expressing.

When really I don’t think that’s true. The person who has passed away would not want you to be suffering and would not want you to be sad for so long.

 

So, holding on to a stress, being aware of how stressed we are. How stressed are you right now? Are you holding tension in an area of your body or in your head or anywhere? Where are you holding it…

 

Tension is who you think you should be, relaxation is who you really are. How do we get into that point of relaxation? The best way is: breathing. And here is where I want you to focus the breath.

 

If you try and meditate, if you try and ‘Brain Train’, if you try and use your breath to relax, if you’re focusing on the moving breaths; that’s not quite going to work.

We need to focus on stillness. Where is the stillness in your breath?

It’s in between the inhalation and the exhalation. That’s where the focus goes, or where your mind clears.

So breathe in & hold at the top of the breath. Pause there for a few seconds. Allow your mind to clear. Then when you’re ready breathe out. When you have fully exhaled, pause for a few seconds. When you’re ready to breathe in (wait till you feel the desire the inhalation will be more fulfilling) breathe in… & repeat.

 

For a few seconds, maybe you can elongate that to 30 seconds. But start with 2, 5, 6, 7, 8 seconds. Do that, practice it, it will help you to de-stress and clear your mind. Try that now.

 

Slow down. Come to a pause, in-between the inhalation and the exhalation. This will help to decrease the stress in your body & become a part of your life.

 

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“Your Brain, Pain & Energy”

I was listening to professor Timothy Noakes who has led exercise science for 20+ maybe even 30+ years now and is a big proponent of low carb, high fat diets.

What I’m going to talk about here is the brain. Timothy actually explains that the main limiting factor within your results (using physical activity as the example) is not exhaustion or decrease in energy, but rather the brain being the limiting factor in order to protect the body.

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What they found through testing over 30 years is that you can find two people with exactly the same VO2 Max (that’s usually the limiting factor that will tell you someone’s performance) and you will get one that can run a marathon in 2 hours 20 minutes and the other can run it in 3 hours.

 

Some people experience these illusions of pain in the muscle or pain in the joint, as blocking you to protect you. So the brain is blocking you from continuing the race.

 

As long as we know this information we know that we can keep going, and get a better experience from it and even learn more.

 

He’s wrote several books, one of them is the law of running and another is real meal revolution. He’s run 71 marathons and ultra marathons (ultra marathons are 50 miles!)

 

The point being in this one is that your brain again is the limiting factor. I keep going back to this because if 80% of your results is psychology, 20% is mechanics and there’s a lot of evidence that points to that being the truth then where should we focus most of our efforts? On the brain.

 

We can work on our brain, work on our emotions and work on our energy levels but where does our energy come from? I had this conversation earlier, does it come from food, does it come from oxygen does It come from sleep?

 

I propose something to you that energy comes from movement, the more you move the more energy you get. Have you noticed that when you’re really active and you’re doing things the more energy you’ve got and you can keep going? When you’re more lethargic and you’ve allowed yourself to be a little bit lazy you can’t be bothered to do anything. This is clear that much of something brings more.

 

Timothy Noakes said that your brain is a limiting factor, but when we know this if it’s fear or if it’s actually pain from exercise, we know that the brain may be bringing up that illusion just to try and protect us and if we can go through that we can actually extend, and get our results that we desire a little bit sooner than we thought rather than being stopped by these illusions.

 

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How to Direct Your Own Internal Dialogue

How to Direct Your Own Internal Dialogue

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  • “Why did they do that or say that? It’s because…”
  • “How did that happen? I must have…”                                                           
  • “Why don’t things work out for me? It’s because…”
  • “What will happen if I fail? It will devastate me because……
  • “What if they reject me? I will feel…”
  • “Why can’t I get ahead? What am I doing wrong?

 

Are you stuck in negative thinking patterns? Or perhaps you’re not paying attention to your thoughts, & are unaware of how your thoughts impact your emotions.

These intrusive, self-sabotaging thoughts are often founded on the belief that you’re not good enough.

Self-critical thoughts are counterproductive to embracing optimalism!

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To live an optimal life, it’s so important to remember the laws of attraction:

 

  • The law of attraction states that every positive or negative event that happened with you was attracted by you.  Although it might sound a bit simplistic, concentrating your focus on the positive allows you the freedom to take control of how your futures develops, shaping it in the ways you choose.

 

Our thoughts, those little things that occur inside our heads that we don’t give voice to, often occur automatically & unconsciously Without realizing it you tell yourself negative things constantly.

This negative self-talk is very powerful because you do tend to believe what you tell yourself.

At the same time, you are your own worst critic.

 

In order to change your thinking, you must focus attention on your thoughts. 

 

To change your internal dialogue & tone down the intensity of emotion, try to describe the situation in your mind, rather than interpret it as ‘good’ or ‘bad.’  

What do you say to yourself during the course of the day?  How do you analyse or interpret different situations?  When you’re stuck in traffic, do you tell yourself “this is unbearable?” 

If you make a mistake, do you call yourself an “idiot?”

As you examine your thoughts, ask yourself “Is this thought helpful?”  

“Do I really want to be thinking in this way?”

 

Another powerful tool to attract positivity into your life is to practice self-affirmations

 

By using the power of positive affirmations & by repeating them you can recondition your brain                                             & change how you feel & think about any situation.

Some examples are:

 

  • I deserve to be happy & successful
  • I have the power to change myself
  • I can forgive &understand others & their motives
  • I can make my own choices & decisions
  • I am free to choose to live as I wish & to give priority to my desires
  • I am flexible & open to change in every aspect of my life
  • It is enough to have done my best
  • I deserve to be loved

 

Make sure to tailor these self-affirming statements to your own personal needs & desires.

At first you may not feel like you agree with some of the things you are saying but eventually you will change the way you think & act & that is the purpose of these statements.

If you have a positive attitude, then you begin to expect that things will turn out well & you are likely to attract success into your life.

 

The Bottom Line…

The bottom line is that having a positive attitude makes for better, happier & healthier days & a life full of Health Wealth.

To read more be sure to check out the full text here: Health Wealth: Feel Like a Billion Dollars Every Day Of The Week.

To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant

p.s.

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Combating Stress With Meditation

        Meditation…… A Proven Stress Buster!

Many people think they know what meditation is but have never really tried it

Some common objections to meditation….” I don’t have the time,” “I don’t know how,” or I tried it once & it really didn’t work for me.”  These reasons are often the same ones for why people don’t exercise on a regular basis, eat better, work on their relationships & pretty much everything else we know we “should” do to improve our lives

 

But hopefully you are fully committed to living your optimal life.

 

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Meditation is a very useful tool to reduce the negative stress in your life!

It has truly amazing benefits, & you can start today, & continue for the rest of your life.

 

What Can Meditation Do for Stress?

By learning to calm your body & mind you will be feeling better, refreshed & ready to face the challenges of your day with a healthy attitude.

Throughout the day, when we experience stress, our bodies automatically react in ways that prepare us to fight or run.

In some cases of extreme danger, this physical response is helpful. However, a prolonged state of such agitation can cause physical damage to every part of the body.

 

Meditation affects the body in exactly the opposite ways that stress does. It restores the body to a calm state, helping the body to repair itself & preventing new damage due to the physical effects of stress.

 

Some additional benefits of meditation:

 

  • Increasing focus & productivityMany people take up meditation as an antidote, to help navigate the disruption that is part of the modern working world without sacrificing their effectiveness.
  • Letting go of unwanted habits — Meditation is often a crucial support for people who are giving up habits like smoking, overeating, or other destructive behaviours
  • Dealing with difficult events —Dealing with a sad event or a challenging time in one’s life is often the catalyst for beginning a meditation practice.
  • Seeking meaning & self-knowledge — We all want to know why we’re here & what our lives are about. Meditation can help quiet our minds & provide spiritual meaning in our lives

 

 

The Bottom Line…

 

Give meditation a try…… Many people end up loving the practice & making it a regular part of their daily routine

To read more be sure to check out the full text here: Health Wealth: Feel Like a Billion Dollars Every Day Of The Week.

  • In chapter 3 (Crushing Your Stress), I provide simple steps to start your meditation practice to live a healthier, mindful life.

 

To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant

p.s.

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How to make stress work for you

A stress-free life would be very boring; How to make stress work for you!

 

We rarely hear people say, “I’m really feeling stressed — isn’t that great?” But if we didn’t have some stress in our lives — the ‘good stress’ variety — we’d feel uninspired, unfocused & often times very unhappy.

Many people believe that all stress is bad, but you may have heard that there’s “good stress” & “bad stress.” Do you know what people mean by that?

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First let’s take a look at stress in general & how it can affect us. The most common type of stress is acute stress. It is a very normal response from quick surprises, impending life, work or family issues or situations that need a quick response. This is what we normally think of as stress, but we can still feel in control of ourselves while resolving the issue.

Acute stress in itself doesn’t take a heavy toll if we find ways to relax quickly after dealing with the situation.

 

Once the stressor has been dealt with, we need to return our body to homeostasis, or its pre-stress state, to be healthy & happy.

 

The type of stress we really have to worry about is chronic stress.

This type of stress comes when we repeatedly face stressors that take a heavy toll & feel inescapable.

A stressful job or an unhappy home life can bring chronic stress. This is what we normally think of when we experience negative stress consequences.  Everyone has felt this at some times or another in their lives…& it’s a very unpleasant state of mind & body to experience

 

We become tired, irritable, rundown, depleted in energy & motivation. Added to this dismal state of mind & body, we often feel helpless to change the situation or even our outlook.

 

This chronic stress can seriously harm our physical, emotional & spiritual well-being.  If you find yourself in this type of situation, you really must rethink your priorities & actively seek ways to make the necessary changes to improve the quality of your life.

 

Now on to the good news…….

 

So-calledgood stress,” or what psychologists refer to as “eustress,” is the type of stress we feel when we feel excited. Our pulse quickens, our hormones change, but there is no threat or fear.

 

We feel this type of stress when we ride a roller coaster, compete for a promotion, go on a first date, practice a sport or hobby we are passionate about. There are many triggers for this good stress, & it keeps us feeling alive & excited about life.

 

  • One important consideration…….    Good stress can become bad for you if you experience too much of it. (Adrenaline junkies know this firsthand.)
  • This is because your stress response is triggered either way, & if you’re adding that to chronic stress, or several other stressors, there is still a cumulative effect: lots of stress!
  • That’s why it’s important to be in tune with yourself & be able to tell when you’ve had too much

 

The Bottom Line…

Overall, it’s important to have good stress in your life. By making the effort to cut out as much chronic stress as possible, changing your perception of stress where you can, & adding some positive activities that enrich your body, soul & spirit, you can create a nice balance in your life.

To read more be sure to check out the full text here: Health Wealth: Feel Like a Billion Dollars Every Day Of The Week.

 

To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant

p.s.

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Managing your life Pt.2

Manage your life in a way that will generate the  high-quality results that you desire & deserve

The first step towards any change is awareness. As Dr. Phil famously says to his guests & viewing audience “You can’t change what you don’t acknowledge.”

 If you read my last blog, I strongly suggested that you keep track of all your activities for a 24-hour period. Please check out my suggestions from my book, Health Wealth: Feel Like a Billion Dollars Every Day Of The Week. for additional tips on this exercise.

 

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I hope you got a chance to do this activity.  It should have provided you with valuable information in planning your strategy to incorporate the changes you need to improve your mental, physical & spiritual health.

 

  • Were you able to see the imbalances in your life that may be sabotaging your desire to live a healthier life?
  • Too much time devoted to work?  
  • Not enough time for family & other important relationships?  
  • Not enough time to exercise?  Eating on the run; not always making healthy food choices?                 

 

You need to take a close look at your lifestyle choices & determine what you can do to improve the quality of your life.

 

Today I would like to focus on some simple steps you can take to start incorporating exercise into your life so you can start increasing your energy, stamina & overall good health.

Please remember that gradually working toward change improves your odds of success. A new behavior needs to be repeated & then given a chance to become part of your routine.  

  • Whenever possible, walk. Increase the amount of time you can walk, versus sit or drive. It doesn’t take that much extra time to park a bit farther from the entrance to the grocery store or mall.
  • At work stretch in your chair, squat to pick something up, stand up when you talk on the phone: take breaks when sitting in front of your computer for extended periods of time- take a quick walk &/or stretch & do some exercises while you watch TV.
  • Take a short vigorous walk during part of your lunch hour
  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator
  • Turn household activities, like gardening, into exercise.
  • Play with your children or dog in the yard or a park.
  • While watching TV, talking on the phone, or reading a book, try doing isometric exercises.

 

Pick a couple of these ideas & use them each day. When you see just how much time we waste sitting, standing in lines, waiting for stoplights, etc., you’ll see just how easy exercise can be & you can do it in a very short time.

Build up slowly day by day so you can incorporate these healthy habits into your daily routine

The Bottom Line…

“99% of failures come from those who have the habit of making up excuses”

                                                                                                                George W. Carver

 

To read more be sure to check out the full text here: Health Wealth: Feel Like a Billion Dollars Every Day Of The Week. To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant

 

p.s.

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Managing your Life

Feel like your average day is, a ringing iPhone, bills to be paid, kids needing your time & attention & a to-do list that’s impossible to complete?

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We’ve all been there! You end up feeling tired, stressed & frustrated. When you’ve had “one of those days” how are you supposed to find the time to exercise or for that matter make healthy food choices when the time keeps slipping away from you.

We hear a lot about living a healthy lifestyle & most of us make a valiant effort to make healthy choices in our lives. But all too often we get sidetracked by other demands in our lives. Even with the challenges of faced-paced living, you can learn to take good care of yourself!

it’s not impossible to seize the day, even if only in bite-size chunks to begin with. Are you living a general lifestyle or are you the general of your life? Don’t let stress get out of control.

  • The first thing I want you to do is simply track a 24hour period.

 

  • Make this list (a diary is even better)) as complete as possible – include planned work hours & business meetings, social events, time with family or loved ones, exercise time, sleep time etc. I think you get the idea!

You will then be able spot the imbalances in your life & be ready to start making the adjustments that you need to live a happier, healthier, more balanced lifestyle.

  

In my book, Health Wealth: Feel Like a Billion Dollars Every Day Of The Week. I provide you with a more detailed explanation of how we are going to use this diary to start you on the road to living your optimal life.

 

 

The  Bottom Line…

You don’t have to change everything at the same time.

In fact, the trick to healthy living is making small changes – Taking more steps each day, adding to the success of the previous day.

To read more be sure to check out the full text here: Health Wealth: Feel Like a Billion Dollars Every Day Of The Week.

 

To Your Best Health,

ShapeTrainer Daniel Grant

 

p.s.

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