Giving Thanks – and A Gift for You

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Giving Thanks -

I have so much to give thanks for this year that I almost don’t know where to start, so here goes:

Big thanks to my family, especially hubby and Smiley! With all the hassles of life in NYC you have stood by me and helped me grow. I love you so much more!

Thank you to Alycea Ungaro and the crew at Real Pilates. You embraced me from the beginning and made my transition back to NYC as easy as it could be. You have cradled me through hubby’s depression, my parents dying, and my own crazy stress, while allowing me to continue to grow as a Pilates teacher. There are no words.

Thank you to my Pilates and Reiki clients, readers, and viewers. Without you I wouldn’t have the awesome life that I have. You give me reason to get up at 5am and start my day knowing that you need and enjoy what I have to offer. I love you all!

Thank you to my blogging sisters who support me from near and far. You guys make me smile, laugh, and cry. The warmth and caring that I have experienced from the communities at BlogHer, Fitfluential, and SITS is just amazing. There are so many of you I cannot list you all, but you know who you are!

Thank you to my blog readers and social media buddies (that would be you!), who seem interested in what I put out there. You keep me connected and interested in the wide world outside of my big island. Special hugs to Dax Moy for teaching me to be a coach!

Thank you to my old COMO Shambhala family at Parrot Cay and elsewhere. You all still continue to amaze and delight me with your photos, jokes, travels, and connection.

And that gift for you? – Use code BF2014 to receive an additional 25% off any of my Pilates Audios through Tuesday 2 December, 2014.

(Read a review of my Pilates Basics Mat Class audio.)

Looking forward to an even more awesome 2015!

The Practice

The Practice – Simple Tools for Managing Stress

An Interview with the author of The Practice – Simple Tools for Managing Stress, Finding Inner Peace, and Uncovering Happiness, Barb Schmidt.

I love Barb Schmidt’s The Practice, a small and unassuming handbook that introduces (or reminds us of) basic cross-cultural tools for stress management and greater happiness.

This work is built around three pillars – waking up, being present, and letting go – all of which are present in the judeo-christian and muslim traditions, as well as eastern thought. Through the use of mantras, meditations, and other easy to follow and accepted techniques, Schmidt teaches her readers truly simple solutions to help with handling our complex and stressful lives.

Barb Schmidt is the founder of Peaceful Mind Peaceful World, a community outreach program through Florida Atlantic University (FAU) designed to promote dialogue in the greater community on the topic of inner peace by incorporating workshops and weekly teachings with Barb and many of her esteemed mentors, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Dr. Jane Goodall, Dr. Andrew Weil, and many others.

Barb is also the founder of Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life, a non-profit organization through which she teaches The Practice, a three-part guide to practical spirituality in the modern world and her tool for spreading her belief that “outer peace begins with inner peace.” Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life has rapidly expanded to include an online community via Facebook (with posts reaching over 10 million people), through their daily inspirational emails and weekly blogs. In 2014, Barb’s extensive achievements in fostering positive change earned her an invitation to the White House State Dinner.

Join her for a live chat Tuesday November 11, 2014 at 4pm ET.

The Practice

1.              What brought you to meditation?

When I got out of the treatment center for my bulimia, the 11th step of AA sent me on a serious search of an inward, deep connection with God. I read The Road Less Traveled and started becoming interested in meditation and Eastern religions.

2.            How did The Practice/A Path help you overcome your greatest challenge?

When I started a path of self-discovery, and deep connection with God, little by little in meditation I started to get to know me – all of the good and all of the not so good things that happened in my life.  I believe that my spiritual path has helped me accept me, all of me, and has helped me feel complete; helped me be open and receptive to life; vulnerable. Through this acceptance of my life I have overcome my fear of not being good enough, not being lovable, not feeling complete or whole.

3.         What prompted you to found The Practice?

I have a deep desire to help all beings realize their magnificence; realize that peace is within; you just have to sit with yourself; get to know yourself; accept yourself fully and you can and will live your greatest life! I want outer peace in the world and this begins with finding inner peace; and The Practice can help do just that.

4.        When was the first time you meditated?

I grew up Catholic so I have always had the tradition of praying before bed; praying before meals. But I actually first started meditating in 1984.

5.            What was your inspiration in writing this book?

I want to change the world- I want to change people’s lives- I want all beings to realize their greatest lives- I want outer peace and love in the world and I know deeply that this first starts with inner peace. So The Practice is a toolkit for bringing inner peace into life. Being a recovering addict myself, I have a strong passion for helping people overcome addiction and live the great life they can live.

6.            There are so many self- help books out there what makes yours stand out?

I feel that I’ve taken thoughtful deep practices, like meditation and explained them as an easy to understand and follow guide for life. I have given many personal examples as well as used many quotes from so many of our greatest teachers. I’m hoping that as people read this book they say to themselves “I can do this- I want to do this- I want to live my most magnificent life!”

7.            What is your mission for PMPL?

Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life is a movement to peace, and wholeness. It’s a vision I have of changing the world through inner peace. The Practice is a path; method for living a self-empowered life, managing the stresses of life, and uncovering the happiness and greatness that we all have within. We have become such an external society of beings and we must start living our lives from “the inside out”. We cannot live the life we wish to live at the mercy of the external world. When we take the time to go within each day, ground ourselves, we can take on the challenges of the world; our lives with strength, security and patience. Having patience, managing our stress, living with peace and love is changing the world; fulfilling the mission of Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life.

8.        What do you like to do in your free time?

I love to read, spend time with friends and family, walk and play with my dog Ellie, yoga, pilates, walking, skiing, watch football and basketball.

9.        What would you like for people to take away from your book/message?

We all have everything we need within us to live the greatest life. We have all the security, strength, courage we need without needing anything from the outside. We can have complete control over what we do and say and how we let life affect us- we can manage our stress, we can learn patience and we can live the life we wish to live.

11.        What spiritual teacher has influenced you the most?

There are so many it’s hard to pick one! I am such a firm believer that we are all meant to be our own teachers and it’s our job to get there. If I had to name a few I would say, the Dalai Lama, Tenzin Palmo, James Finley, Scott Peck, St. Francis of Assisi, Sri Ramakrishna, Gandhi; see I can’t just name one!

12.        What is one simple thing everyone can adapt into his or her lives?

We can all stop, breathe, smile and spend a minute just being!

reiki 1 class

Reiki I Class – NYC Nov 15, 2014

Join Lynda Lippin for a Reiki I Class on Saturday, November 15 11am-2pm in NYC’s Upper West Side

I love to teach Reiki!

In the Usui Reiki I class you will learn the history of Reiki, receive a traditional attunement to Reiki, and learn to treat yourself and others.

Traditional Usui Reiki begins as a self-practice. The daily self practice, which takes about 20 minutes, will help you stay calm, become more balanced, and move through your life with greater ease.

Usui Reiki can also be done as a treatment for others, using the same principles as the self-practice. Reiki will help others feel better, sleep better, and generally be more balanced. And when you give Reiki, you get Reiki at the same time!

Reiki is great for pain relief, better sleep, greater relaxation, and better focus.

Reiki causes no harm, is non-invasive, and can even be done without touching someone at all in infectious disease scenarios.

Best of all, Reiki is super easy to learn and practice!

In this short but sweet class you will:

  • learn the history of Reiki and definitions
  • receive a Reiki I attunement from Reiki Master Lynda Lippin
  • learn the protocols for Reiki self-practice and treatments on others
  • practice giving and receiving Reiki yourself, one-to-one, and in a group
  • upon completion you will receive a .pdf file of your Reiki I (first degree) certificate

Location – 91st and Broadway, NY, NY

Cost = $150.00

I require a $50 non-refundable deposit via Paypal to hold your spot in the class.

This class is full. If you are interested in future classes, please leave a comment.

The balance of $100 to be paid in cash on the day of class. I look forward to seeing you there!

 

acoustibuds

Acoustibuds Sport Tips Giveaway

Acoustibuds Sport Tips Giveaway

Two readers will win a complete set of Acoustibuds, which make your earbuds more comfortable, stable, and improves sound quality.

The Acoustibuds Sport Tips work on all earbuds, with both forward and side facing speakers.

Read my review of Acoustibuds Sport Tips.

You can enter daily from now through October 31. I will announce the winners by November 2.

If you really want to order them now, use the code BURTON20 for 20% off the clear or black EPB tips.

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

perform better with pilates

Perform Better with Pilates

Whatever you do, you will perform better with Pilates.

I talk to people every day about the benefits of doing Pilates.

I mean, who doesn’t want to be stronger, look better, feel better? Everyone I know loves the idea of a tighter tush, flatter abs, and leaner legs.

But those are just the obvious benefits. There are other “behind the scenes” benefits that increase your ability to perform well throughout your life.

Breathing

Pilates is all about the breath. Joseph Pilates was asthmatic and had a hard time breathing, so he knew how detrimental it is to not breathe well. With a regular Pilates practice your lung capacity will increase, as will your ability to move and function.

perform better with pilates

Balance

Let’s face it, balance is a huge issue for us bipeds, especially as we get older. Better balance leads to more activity and to more confidence. As we learn to navigate our bodies and the springs, balance improves and we become more confident and active movers.

Coordination

Coordinated movement requires  an awareness of our bodies and parts in space, as well as enough strength and flexibility to use our bodies in specific ways towards specific goals.

For example, playing tennis requires that you be able to see what the other player is doing, judge where the ball will land, get to that spot and properly swing your racket to hit the ball back over the net. There is a lot going on!

In Pilates you are always aware of where your body is, what the parts are doing, and whether you are breathing or not. And sometimes you are balancing at the same time. It’s a lot – a lot like life!

Whether you are training for sports, for a hiking trip, or simply to keep up with your kids and stay active, Pilates will help you do things better.

Try it!

 

Pilates & Fitness Teachers Marketing

Pilates & Fitness Teachers – Read ONLY If You Need Clients

I have been hearing from a lot of Pilates & Fitness Teachers and they are looking for new clients.

What if… attracting the Pilates & Fitness clients you want and need was not so difficult?

What if… small changes in how you present yourself, market yourself, and teach would make BIG changes in your schedule and income?

What if… you could work fewer hours and make more money while helping people more?

I believe that we are all capable of being busy, talented trainers who can help our clients transform.

I believe that the process of transformation starts with us, the pilates & fitness teachers. Once we see how easy and great we can be, we attract clients who want what we have to offer.

Which brings me to my next Marketing 101 workshop. Use Code “LLGift” at checkout (or mention if you call) and receive a free gift at the desk!

Expanding and Maintaining Your High End Client Base
Real Pilates, 177 Duane Street, NY, NY 10013, 212-625-0777
Wednesday, October 15, 3:00 – 4:30pm, $45
What do you as a trainer need to know about attracting great clients? In this workshop Lynda will share her secrets that keep her steadily busy in a city full of trainers who cost a lot less. Learn which skills are crucial, how to do more with less, and be adaptable while maintaining strong personal integrity.
Soy-whey-protein-diet1

Pros & Cons of Calorie Counting

Pros & Cons of Calorie Counting

– Advice from Top Bloggers (including me!)

ProForm, leaders in the treadmills industry, are interested in much more than just exercising when it comes to health and fitness. They believe that it takes a combination of things in order to stay fit in a world of fast foods, restaurants and unhealthy eating. Their team of experts go out of our way to keep their audience informed on important topics related to fitness and health.

So, they turned to some top bloggers (including yours truly) for advice on the age-old subject of calorie counting. Some people practice calorie counting to ensure that they intake a healthy amount each day. And, when it comes to a healthy amount of calories, too little is just as bad as too many.

Some of the top bloggers below believe that calorie counting helps you make wiser eating choices. On the other hand, some tend to find it to be a serious waste of time. Read on to discover what I and the other health and fitness experts have to say about calorie counting and how it affects your personal wellness, health, and overall life.

Pros & Cons of Calorie Counting – Advice from Pilates and Reiki

Calorie counting can turn into an obsession if you’re not careful. It can be a very time consuming process. And, if you’re not careful, you just may lose focus of the desired results… actually losing weight. ProForm asked me for some advice on calorie counting versus Reiki treatments:

Do you think that calorie counting has a positive impact on personal health and wellness? Why?

I think the answer depends on how you and your brain tend to work. Many people do well counting calories, because the simple act of meal planning and calculating numbers forces them to eat less. So many of us ingest our calories mindlessly, but true calorie counting can only be done mindfully. The trick is cutting back enough to lose weight, but not too much.

That said, calorie counting can make some people over-focus on the numbers, instead of how they feel and how their clothing fits. Again, different personalities and learning styles need different weight loss strategies.

There are health problems that disappear for many with Reiki treatments. Do you think that weight problems can be combated with Reiki treatments rather than counting calories?

Reiki can definitely have a positive effect on weight loss, when combined with a good diet and exercise program. Daily Reiki self-practice, like and mindfulness practice, will help calm you down and keep you relaxed and focused.

It’s amazing, but just 20 minutes of self-Reiki care a day can make it easier to take of yourself better in what you eat and drink. And it also works if you pay someone to do the Reiki treatment for you. But you still have to actually be active in the weight loss, paying attention to what and how you eat and move.

Christina Aguilera recently credited Reiki with assisting her 30 pound weight loss. She stated that three times a week of Reiki treatments helped give her the focus and fortitude to eat healthy and keep the weight off, but she still has to eat healthy. You can’t Reiki away a bad diet!

Pros & Cons of Calorie Counting – Advice from Skinny Mom

Calorie counting is a hot topic among women who understand that health and beauty can go hand-in-hand. We asked Skinny Mom about calorie counting and the type of impact it has on the health and wellness of these women. Our team also inquired about Skinny Mom’s ideas on how personal health is affected by the calories found in various types of foods.

Do you think that calorie counting has a positive impact on personal health and wellness? Why?

I find that for myself and other busy moms, calorie counting is a tedious task that no one has time for! Keeping track of every calorie consumed and constantly adding them up is a chore that is unsustainable in the long run. This is especially true with busy Moms.

When you think about calorie counting from a common sense standpoint, you’ll realize that all calories are not created equal. Think about it—are 100 calories in M&Ms equal to a 100 calories in blueberries in terms of health and wellness? No–the M&Ms are full of fat, refined sugar, and salt while the blueberries are full of vitamins and minerals.

The reason why people swear by calorie counting is that it gives their day structure. It takes the guesswork out of dieting because you’re able to calculate how much to eat throughout the day. A healthier and more effective method for creating structure within a diet is focusing on carbohydrates, the macronutrient that fuels your body and gives you energy.

Carbohydrates are strategically planned throughout the week to speed up your metabolism and get you lean and toned up fast! This is alongside a strong focus on vegetables, protein, and healthy fats. I like to follow a carb rotation plan and I call it my Power 30 Plan.

I actually used this method as a fitness competitor before I had my son. I’ve now tweaked it for busy Mom’s like myself. It’s structured enough to make you stick to it, but flexible enough to balance cooking for your family and enjoying occasional treats! This is a long term lifestyle that is truly sustainable.

There are so many food categories you cover. What impact do calories coming from varying food types have on personal health?

It’s SO important to get your calories from a variety of food categories because each food has its own benefit to your body. Every food has a unique vitamin and mineral complex and different foods work together for better nutrient absorption and more energy.

What I love about my POWER 30 Carb Rotation Program is that no food group is off limit. This is not one of those diets where you cut out a whole food category.  You pretty much can eat everything in moderation making it easy to follow long term.

The tricky part comes with timing and portion control of these different food groups. We want to maximize your energy and boost your metabolism, so choosing when to bring in carbohydrates is important.

Pros & Cons of Calorie Counting – Advice from Treadmill Reviews

Calorie counting works for some. Yet, there are others who consider it to be a major waste of time when it comes to personal health and wellness. We asked Treadmill Reviews how important calorie counting is to a person trying to become and stay physically fit. This top blogger truly believes in combining a healthy diet with working out using treadmills.

Do you think that calorie counting has a positive impact on personal health and wellness? Why?

Focusing on the multiple factors that impact a person’s health will have a ripple effect that will improve the health and wellness of anyone. Each body type has other factors that will impact the way they improve their health and wellness.

For many people calorie counting is a way to keep focused on a balanced diet and make educated healthy food choices that they may have not otherwise. Each person should do the research and decide if calorie counting is the best way to improve their personal health.

What type of treadmill burns the most calories?

A versatile treadmill that offers multiple ways to get the burn going will be the best way to burn the most calories. A treadmill that offers incline training will substantially improve the amount of calories burned during a shorter workout time.

An advanced treadmill that monitors your calories is going to be great, but a treadmill that takes in your age, BMI, weight and height will give you the most accurate calculation of calorie burn.

Pros & Cons of Calorie Counting – Advice from Fitness Is Delicious

Calorie counting was once a very popular trend for people hoping to lose weight and stay physically fit. Many people still use it as a form of doing “balances and checks” when it comes to eating habits. But, top blogger Fitness Is Delicious isn’t a fan of the age-old approach to healthy eating. And, here’s why:

Do you think that calorie counting has a positive impact on personal health and wellness? Why?

In most cases, no. For the majority of us, counting calories is not a sustainable health habit. It’s exhausting, it isn’t always accurate and it doesn’t place an emphasis on eating real, nutrient dense food.

Let me explain- let’s say you need to consume 1,800 calories during the day to lose weight. What does that 1,800 calories look like? In a scenario where the person is focused solely on calories, someone may have the choice to eat an apple with almond butter, or a 100 calorie snack pack.

Although the 100 calorie snack pack may have less calories, it’s not the better choice. The apple with almond butter provides nutrients, satiety and other health benefits. The 100 calorie pack is still a highly processed snack with little to no nutrient density and no satiety- not to mention it’s probably made up of a laundry list of ingredients.

I’m not suggesting that calories don’t matter at all, but your first priority should be focusing on nutrient dense food options that will support a healthy mind and body. There is a caveat (isn’t there always?)- counting calories and/or macronutrients, may be a necessity for some athletes.

Depending on their fitness goals, these individuals need to track everything they are eating. That being said, they are the minority and for the general public and those looking for a healthier lifestyle, counting calories is not the way to go. Instead, focus on real, nutrient dense food that supports your everyday health and fitness goals.

When you were in college you counted your calories and learned the negative side of a low calorie diet. What advice do you have for those who think that is their next option?

When I focused on a low calorie diet, my diet consisted of things like sugar-free energy drinks, low calorie yogurts and salads with little to no protein; not to mention my meals were pretty tasteless. I was so focused on making sure I wasn’t consuming a lot of calories, that I was missing out on eating real, nutrient dense food (that tasted delicious) and I was also screwing with my metabolism.

Your body needs calories to function every day; for things like hormone regulation, supporting a healthy immune system and even weight-loss- yes weight-loss. Your body has to have calories to burn calories! If you are stuck on a low calorie cycle, try something like a nutritional reset.

Take 30 days to focus on eating three, nutrient dense meals a day, that each include a protein, some vegetables, good fats and some fruit. Have some satiating snacks if you need and cut out processed foods and sugar. Take time to refocus your eating habits and psychological association with food by resetting the way you’ve thought about food in the past.

Pros & Cons of Calorie Counting – Advice from Performance Fitness LLC

Calorie counting is great for some, yet useless to others. Deciding what’s best for you should be based on your own healthy goals… physical health, or psychological health. That’s what the top blogger Performance Fitness LLC told us when we asked about the impact of calorie counting. Here’s the blogger’s take on the role it plays in creating a better life:

Do you think that calorie counting has a positive impact on personal health and wellness? Why?

That depends on the person and their approach to calorie counting. In terms of physical health, there are the obviously benefits of weight loss or weight maintenance, but in terms of psychological health and wellness, some people need to avoid counting calories or at least take a break from it.

I find that there are two types of people for whom calorie counting doesn’t work:

  1. The Game Show Contestant – This is the person who loves to play the “Beat My Calories” game. In a weight loss scenario, they set their calories in their favorite food tracking app, allowing for the necessary deficit to lose weight, and then try to constantly come in UNDER their deficit. In fact coming in under their calories at days end is a source of pride for this person. Remember that their calories have already been set at a deficit to allow for weight loss, so coming in under this number results in far too few calories being taken in. This person is also constantly starving, and eventually gives up on their plan because their extremely restricted plan is impossible to maintain, and they usually end up feeling like a failure.

  2. The Compulsive Counter – This person compulsively tracks every morsel of food to that point that it becomes their second job. They’re constantly thinking about their next meal and meticulously write down every detail of every food that they ingest. This person also ends of being miserable because the task of writing down every detail of every food becomes an all-consuming and overwhelming chore.

Calories are obviously important. Constantly eat in excess of your caloric needs, and you’ll never achieve your fat loss goals or be able to maintain your weight. If a client doesn’t fall into one of the above categories, then I think counting calories sensibly can be a positive exercise. After all, it can be great feedback to inform your food choices throughout the day.

However, I still prefer that clients use their energy to focus on what they eat; choosing minimally processed foods over highly processed items, prioritizing vegetables and proteins, and learning awareness of their food behaviors and overeating triggers. Even journaling without calorie counting can be a helpful exercise, helping to build awareness of portion size and even situations that cause overeating.

Your motto is A Better Body. A Better Life. What advice do you have for those working for a better life? How could calorie counting play into your plan?

  1. Take responsibility for where you are now.

  2. Forgive yourself for your past and move on.

  3. Realize that you can’t fix the past and you really can’t control your future, but you can try to make a better future through the choices (foods, working out on a consistent basis) you make in the present.

  4. Determine if you’re truly ready to make a change.

  5. Figure out why you’re motivated to make a change.

  6. Set your goals and then determine your action plan.

If you can calorie count in a sane way, by all means do it. It can help you to stay on track and reach your health and fitness goals, and create a better life.

Bottom Line: Calories Count, Even If You Don’t Count Calories

The one thing all of these top bloggers agree on is that whether you practice calorie counting or not, calories do count. How many calories you intake with each snack and meal of each day is vitally important personal health and fitness. But, not everyone has the patience, or the time, for counting calories. If you do, then good for you.

However, that shouldn’t be the main focus of your healthy living routines. Instead, you need to develop a healthy diet, and follow it each and every day. That means learning to make better choices when it comes to the foods you eat. In time, this should be so routine that you’ll never have to worry about counting calories again.

So, if you’re looking for an alternative to counting each and every calorie you intake, we have the answers. Plan your daily meals ahead of time to ensure that you intake the proper amount of calories and carbs. And, develop and maintain a healthy fitness routine to ensure personal health and wellness.

This informational series, “Pros & Cons of Calorie Counting – Advice from Top Bloggers” was created by the treadmill experts at Proform. Ready to combine an effective fitness program with your new healthy eating habits? Visit Proform treadmills and start your new healthy routine today.