Disconnect to Connect

putting-your-phone-away-and-paying-attention-to-those-talking-14541044.png

Disconnect to Connect

A Challenge…

Visting Memory Lane is a wonderful journey as we recollect learning experiences and how we, as a society, have grown for the better and sometimes in ways our grandparents would be astonished.   Although each generation of grandparents have that in common, don’t they?

As a child, I was fortunate to travel back ‘home’, Newfoundland, for many family visits (68 first cousins) and then my first ‘real’ job was with Air Canada moving along to the publishing industry traveling all over the United States and Canada.  

There was one common denominator with traveling and that was meeting people and talking.  Conversations would include all sorts of subjects and I’m not the only one who encountered meeting people and you certainly don’t have to travel to meet and talk to anyone.  

Talking and socializing face to face seems to be fading away or is it me?  Next time you’re out in a restaurant, or in an airport or simply when someone is walking on the street take a look to see what they’re doing.  What is the one thing that most of us have on us 24 hours a day?  You guessed correctly ~ it’s our cell phones! 

How in the world did the world operate without the cell phones years ago?  How in the world did we wait, yes, waited until we got home to check our answering machines.  Young kids nowadays are asking, “What’s an answering machine?”.   We could be in the middle of a conversation, or family dinner, or even a meeting with our phones next to us!  What’s worse is we just HAVE to check on that text message right now!  Of course it can’t wait someone needs us!  I would say a good 80% of us are guilty of this scenario. 

Starbucks is the perfect scene.  You walk in and what do you hear?  Machines brewing, orders being taken and names being called for your order.  There is one thing you don’t hear and that is people talking!  Airports is another observation area where travelers once exchanged numbers for either business networking or simply just to stay in touch because they connected.  Ha!  Not now because virtually everyone is on their devices whether computer, cell phone or iPads and let’s not forget your ear plugs connected to the device.  Oh let’s not forget the restaurants!  Do you remember place mats with games on them keeping the kids occupied until food arrives and as a parent, you participated and taught the kids how to unscramble the word or the maze to the dessert? 

Picture it in your mind or simply go into a restaurant.  Mom, Dad and kids even grandparents are out for a nice dinner, or lunch, it’s time to catch up on everything isn’t it?  Nope because everyone is on their device.  There is no laughter.  There are no smiles.  There simply is no conversation.   My husband and I leave our devices in our cars when we go into a restaurant.

Text messages and emails have taken over the simplicity of picking up the phone to clear a point or to make sure there is no misunderstanding in the tone these venues can deliver.  Of course a text message is quick and easy making it very handy but there are circumstances where a phone call is the best to talk.

There isn’t enough time to even talk about the damage being caused to our necks, eyes and posture using these devices.  That’s for another time.

Here’s a 30 day challenge for all of us.  When you’re going for dinner, lunch or Happy Hour, leave your phones in the car.  If that’s too much, leave your phone in your pocket, purse or jacket, on silent and resist the urge to check it even when your counterpart leaves for any reason.  You’ll be amazed sitting enjoying the moment without your device.  It gives the opportunity of just thinking. Challenge your kids to turn their devices off two hours prior to bed for a better sleep - that goes for all of us! 

We have to disconnect to connect to everything around us.  People, events, surroundings and for our concentration.  Ever wonder why the years are going by faster and faster?  We’re not connecting in our moment.  Focusing help us to recollect more memories and improves our mental state. 

Pay it forward - Disconnect to Connect - and start talking having conversations with people. 

-Kim Marsh (Owner-Operator)

Becky's Greek Salsa

 
 

Greek Salsa

2 Roma tomatoes, chopped

1 avocado, chopped

¼ c finely chopped red onion

2 cloves garlic

1 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley

1 tbsp. chopped fresh oregano

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 tbsp. white wine vinegar

4 oz. Feta cheese, crumbled

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients and stir gently. Cover and chill for 2 hours before serving. Love it with pita chips or quartered pita bread!

Sleeping Tips

 
Screen Shot 2018-04-23 at 9.09.14 AM.png
 
 

Are you getting enough sleep at night? We are all guilty of falling asleep on our phones or stimulating our brains with television late at night. Here are a few tips to get more restful sleep. 

- Stick to a sleep schedule of the same bedtime and wake up
time, even on the weekends. 

- Practice a relaxing bedtime ritual such as a breathing exercise
or a yoga sequence.

- If you have trouble sleeping, avoid taking naps, 
especially in the afternoon.

- Sleep on a comfortable mattress and pillow. 

- Evaluate your room.  Be sure that your room temperature
  is between 60 and 67 degrees. Your bedroom should also be free
from any noise that can disturb your sleep.

- Finally, your bedroom should be free from any light. 
Check your room for noises or other distractions. 

Most importantly, exercise regularly!!!

Source: www.sleepfoundation.org

6 Pilates Exercises to Alleviate Back Pain

 
b38-is-my-lower-back-pain-serious-1519243904.jpg
 

Pelvic Tilt to Pelvic Curl
Pelvic tilt is taught to almost everyone who has back pain, especially low back pain. It teaches us to use our abdominal muscles in a way that supports and lengthens the lower back. Here we start with pelvic tilt, and for those who feel comfortable, move to a spinal articulation with pelvic curl.

Chest Lift
One of the common causes of back pain is not weak back muscles, but weak abdominal muscles. Chest lift is a great ab strengthener.
Do this exercise with care. Your hands give some support to the back of your head, but the work needs to come from the abs—not from momentum or pulling your head up. If you get neck pain, stop and go on to the next exercise.

Swan Prep
Swan prep strengthens the back extensors, the muscles the hold us upright. These muscles are often weak and over-stretched in people who have back pain.  Develop this exercise slowly.  

Child’s Pose
Child's pose is an easy and restful stretch for the back.

Kneeling Arm & Leg Reach
This exercise teaches core stability—something very important for those suffering from back pain.

Cat-Cow
Cat-cow moves between a backstretch and a back extension exercise. It promotes flexibility in the spine. Many people use it as a warm-up exercise.

Source: www.verywellfit.com
 

Six Basic Principles of Pilates

 Jospeh Pilates- 1912

Jospeh Pilates- 1912

 

Joseph Pilates had originally called Pilates "Contrology" which was focused on the mind/body/spirit connection. He came up with these 6 basic principles which all work together to help the body move and so that you get the most out of each exercise. Read below to find out what these six principles are. 

  1. Precision: In Pilates, awareness is maintained throughout each movement. There's a certain placement and alignment needed so that you are getting the full benefits out of the move. If you are unable to facilitate a move correctly, that's where a modification comes into play. Don't be afraid to ask your instructor for a modification. 
  2. Breath: Joseph Pilates emphasized using a full breathing cycle in his exercises. Most Pilates exercises coordinate with the breath with the movement. In Pilates, you breathe laterally through your ribs rather than "belly breathing". By breathing laterally, you are able to deeply engage in the core.
  3. Flow: Each Pilates move should be done with flow and grace. The energy used during an exercise connects all body parts making it a full body workout. 
  4. Centering: This concept is defined as physically bringing the focus to the center of the body, the powerhouse area known as the abdominals. By strengthening the core, it will help all of your muscles develop and properly function. 
  5. Concentration: If you bring your focus to the exercise and do it with precision, you will get the maximum benefits from each movement.
  6. Control: When performing a Pilates move you want to maximize the benefits by flowing through each move gracefully rather than powering through focusing on intensity and number of reps.

By becoming familiar with these principles, it will help you before you take your first Pilates class. If you have been doing Pilates for some time now, this may help you advance in your practice. 

 

Source:https://www.verywellfit.com/six-pilates-principles-2704854

Staying Motivated

 
IMG_2513.JPG
 

Why is a buddy system important when you’re attempting, or maintaining, a healthier lifestyle? It’s always more fun to do anything with another person whether it be your spouse, best friend or even your dog!  Yes, your dog because they love going for a walk!  I, myself, don’t get as excited as these furry animals when I am pushing myself to go for a walk!  They jump, bark and wag their tail to the point where it’s comical at times.

Let’s face it we’re all in the same boat when it comes to a healthier lifestyle.  We know what’s needed to lose a few pounds, it’s moderation, self-restraint, self-control, and self-discipline ~ it’s all the same thing!  

Taking classes with my buddy, Jeannette, helps me because I know she wants to get healthier as well and I don’t want her not to achieve her goals.  We all know it’s being held accountable but gosh it sure would be nice to ditch class and do something else. That something else may be having a Starbucks with a friend, or simply hanging out at home on the couch.  Any excuse will do just to skip that class! That’s where your buddy comes into the picture.

My friend, Jeannette, texts me, “What class tomorrow?”  I excitedly respond, “9:00 Pilates with Kandis”. This is great!  We’re signed up and we’re going to make it happen again! Morning rolls around and my brain isn’t awake, let alone, aware and it would be SO easy to skip; however, I know Jeannette will be at class and if I skip, I will hear,   “Gosh Kim I missed you at class”. Something subtle but yet it’ll keep bugging me.  Why? Jeannette committed because of me and yet I didn’t show up. What a great motivating factor and that is why you team up with someone.

As you take classes or go for more walks, drinking your water, and not your latte, you start to feel better and even sleep deeper!  It’s marked on your calendar as a doctor appointment and who cancels on their doctor?

Look around and reach out to someone who needs a little help to get or stay motivate or even someone who could use a friend.  A workout friend is perfect because you each have a goal - to get healthier. Together we’re on the same team!

Reasons why to have a workout buddy:

  1. Mental Health - It’s proven that mental health helps improve cognition along with social interaction.  Sure, it’s not a wine night out but you’ll still laugh helping to decrease stress hormones and boost immunity!  It’s hard finding time with your friends between family and work. A social life is very important.

  2. Motivation - Sometimes it’s easy to find an excuse not to workout no matter the justification but when you have a workout buddy you help one another to reach your fitness goals which improves your health.  Afterall we won’t find an excuse to ditch our friend, now will we? Especially when you give each other a high five after class!

  3. Competition - We all have a competitive nature which helps when you have a workout buddy naturally improving your performance level.  A workout partner motivates you to exercise as well as helping you achieve more while working out pushing you to the next level.   

  4. Achieve Goals Faster - Motivation from your friends will result in that extra push taking that next step, or taking a class when you’re just not feeling it.  Encouragement and persistence are shared between the two resulting in achieving your goals faster!

  5. Celebration - Achieving your goals is a proud moment and helping a friend achieve their fitness goals is even a better reward.  Now it’s celebration time together! Each milestone needs a celebration of some sort because You Did It!

Keep in mind you will slip up but your friend will get you back on track!  An added level of motivation and increased drive is exactly what we all need, so go ask a friend to be your workout buddy today and enjoy the journey!  

Hugs,

Kim Marsh/Owner-operator 

Dark Chocolate Beetroot Coconut Brownies

 
Coconut-Flour-Beet-and-Chocolate-Brownie-Bars-1.jpg

Ingredients: 

- 2 medium beets, peeled and roasted (Trader Joe's) 

- 1 1/4 c. unsweetened baking chocolate

- 1/2 c. coconut oil 

- 1/2 c. sugar 

- 1/2 c. flour 

- 1/2 c. dark chocolate chips 

- 3 eggs

- 2 tbsp. cacao or cocoa powder 

- 1 tsp. unsweetened shredded coconut

Directions: 

1. Chop the beets roughly, combine with the desiccated coconut and puree until smooth. Set aside.

2. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly grease 8x8 square baking dish, line with parchment paper and set aside. 

3. Break up the chocolate, place, along with the coconut oil, in a bowl over a pot of simmering water (water shouldn't touch bowl) and melt, stirring often. Remove from the heat and take the bowl off the pot. Set aside.

4. Combine the flour with the cacao powder, stir with a whisk and set aside. 

5. Beat the eggs and sugar for 2 minutes. Stir in the beet mixture, then gradually pour in the melted chocolate (it will have cooled by then), stirring constantly with a spoon. Fold in the flour mixture (add in chocolate chips when almost all the flour has been mixed in). Stir only until the flour is no longer visible. 

6. Pour the batter into the baking dish, smooth out the top and bake for 25-28minutes. Remove from the oven, let cool in the dish for 5 minutes, then lift out of the dish with paper and place on a cooling rack. 

Makes 9 brownies. 

Recipe by Dayna G.