Tag Archives | Susan Howard Fitness

Much Obliged

By Susan Howard

Like in an annoying friendship, hanging out with someone because of guilt or feeling like you are “supposed to” leads to a destructive unhappy life.  My new responds when someone tries to lay a trip on me about not calling is, “I don’t do that guilt thing.”  I verbally reject the bogus accusations because, guess what, I am an adult and I get to do what I want, when I want.  As I protest, it is obvious I have previously fallen victim and bought into their heavy negative feelings.  In the past I have felt remorse and crappy about myself.  That is why now I have to reject the lame attitudes out loud to prove it to myself.  “I’ll call you when I am damn ready.”

Which brings me to this; food.

You have no obligation to eat what you ordered at a restaurant.  

You have no obligation to eat what someone else ordered at a restaurant.

You have no obligation ..read more

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Hail Mary

What do Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson have in common? That’s right, with the football game on the line and time running out, they have each perfected the Hail Mary. They can throw a bomb half the length of the field, into the end zone for the game winning touchdown.

What does this have to do with you and why do you care? Maybe you don’t even like football and could give two hoots about the Superbowl. Fear not. My usage of the term “The Hail Mary” is to be used thusly; if it’s the end of the day and you haven’t had a chance to workout because of work obligations, travel, family events whatever, you still can throw a Hail Mary.

You should answer the question what could be your Hail Mary routine and keep it in your mind and write it out so you know what to do in a pinch.

Picture this; it’s 9:30 pm and you are ..read more

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Sense Memory

By Susan Howard

One of my clients, who at times struggles to maintain a healthy weight, was “off the wagon” as they say. She got a new demanding job and bought her first home so her stress level was a solid ten. During this time her workouts declined and in turn her eating went south as well. Months later coming back to her training sessions with me she had put on an extra twenty pounds on the hiatus.

Getting her back on track we looked at, in addition to strength training with me, some spinning classes she might sign up for. In the past, spinning was a strong foot hold in her weight loss habits. She enjoyed the music, competition and and energy in the room.

At her first class back, she had to leave the room halfway through the class because she thought she was going to throw up. She was used to maxing out her ride each time she went, but ..read more

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Tip Your Server

By Susan Howard

After graduating college, as a way to make some cash, I waited on tables at a local hipster diner in West Hollywood.  The job is actually a lot harder than you might think.  To be a successful server you have to take on a bunch of tables while keeping them all happy simultaneously even as they are likely on different parts of their meal.  One wants a drinks menu, another patrons hot order of pancakes and bacon is up and the last is ready to go and wants the check.  At a busy restaurant which is where you make the good money, it’s especially challenging.  Plus you are on your feet for eight hours at a time running around punching in orders, carrying food and busing tables.

As a rule, you should tip these people 20 percent of the total bill across the board, unless something really goes horribly bad, like you get a glass of beer ..read more

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Pre-Game Plan For Staying Fit

By Susan Howard

Happy Summer ya all. 

With summer brings BBQ’s and pool parties and as I write this it’s the morning of 4th of July.  In the past I have written about portion control and just take one plate, no seconds and stuff like that.  This time I am going to talk about your pre game plan.

Say you are going to an event that afternoon or evening, here are somethings you can do to help yourself in the storm of hot dogs, potato chips and cupcakes.

First thing that morning, you should workout, Duh.  Get in some cardiovascular activity like a hike, bike ride or a run.  If you can do one of those for 30 minutes and then add 10 or so of strength training you should be good.  When in doubt go on you tube and check out one of the abundant videos, or go old school with push ups and crunches.

Second, eat protein.  We ..read more

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Always, Sometimes, Never

By Susan Howard

This phrase, “Always, Sometimes, Never” reminds me of an Algebra test I didn’t pass or an old drinking game that got me into trouble at a college house party.  Today I am referring to none of the above.  (Answer D) 

Instead, I want you to look at your absolutes. 

From; “I will never stop drinking coffee.” to “I hate weight training.” to  “I am not an early riser.” to “I always need something sweet in the afternoon.”  Whichever one of these phrases relates to you, (you could also fill in the blank with some of your own one-liners) aren’t completely true.

Yes, there are somethings you don’t want to give up…YET, but don’t block off the potential of change you could ignite by deciding that you are any one thing. 

At this moment you are you for as many years as you have been you. You feel most comfortable in your habits, but is the ..read more

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Looking Down

By Susan Howard

If the sky really were falling, surely we would all get crushed.  The reason for this is, we are all constantly looking down at our cellphones, computers or even just the ground.  As I look around, I see forward leaning heads with the cervical curve flattened out and the upper back is slumped with rounded shoulders collapsing in. 

It’s not surprising people are depressed.  Slumping around with your head down is a bummer.  Correct postural alignment can make you feel better.  Why do you think the yogis practice sitting in the lotus position to meditate?  If they are going to get to Nirvana, they have to allow the steady stream of breath to travel up and down the spine.  In order to do this they must have proper alignment.

Here’s how to get straight.  If you are slumped, you know who you are, don’t hate yourself when you are out of correct position.  The first ..read more

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Challenge: Do Something Different

By Susan Howard

CHALLENGE:

Do something different.

If you’ve been in the gym, do some outside workouts, bike, hike, swim, roller skate. 

Or

Vice Versa if you’ve been doing yoga class and mountain climbing, head into the gym do some formal strength training.

We need balance.  We need varied workouts so our minds, bodies, hearts and souls don’t get static. 

Ignite a friend, and tweet at them to get moving. 

Do a meet up for stair climbing and smoothies with some peeps you haven’t had chance to connect with.

Everyone is in their bubble and it’s easy to forget we have each other.  We can lean on each other and use each other for love support and yes, fitness.

Think back at your workouts over the last month and pick something new.

I just filled my bike tires with some new air and hit it on the trail. 

You got this.

Stay Ready.

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Nobody Walks In Los Angeles

By Susan Howard

Every time we head to New York or San Francisco my wife and I walk our asses off.  Grabbing coffees in the AM we head straight for the streets and walk until dinner.  We shop, buy new jeans, coats and running shoes.  We peak in little art galleries and grab a specialty scone along the way.  In the afternoon we likely  do cocktails and a cheese plate or something small.  By dinner we are starving and carrying multiple shopping bags.

The next day we repeat the whole thing again.  We share a vigor for checking out a city and seeing it beyond the touristy spots and the best way to do that we have found is by foot.

This is not true for Los Angeles as it is too vast a place to walk.  You simply must drive.  We drive so much in LA my clients complain about tight hip flexors and right achilles tendons from sitting ..read more

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Self Harm V. Self Love

By Susan Howard

The battle begins.  Who will reign triumphant, love or hate?  I have worked with a few clients who in their sordid past were self harmers—some with food, drugs or razor blades.  No matter the vice, they are all the same really.  Circumventing life frustrations, taking the stress out in a way that cripples them.  Instead of dealing with issues straight on, they hide their feelings and act out.

Why is it so hard to avoid self loathing?  I can take the thinnest most in shape person and they struggle as much as the over weight one.  Maybe that is a reason for the popularity of Instagram in that people are desperately trying to convince other people they are beautiful as they struggle with their own inner pain.

Who cares what you look like, it’s what’s on the inside that counts, as the old saying goes.  People do care what you look like, and you care what you ..read more

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