Mindfulness and You

Dr. Donna Rockwell, clinical psychologist/mindfulness expert wrote that most people live in a state where they are “either bemoaning their past or catastrophizing their future“. What is mindfulness? Over the last decade, mindfulness has become a buzz-word. But what is mindfulness? Jon Kabat-Zinn, considered the master of mindfulness describes mindfulness as: paying attention on purpose to something in the present non-judgementally Living in the Present But what about the present? For most of us, we spend very little time in the present. We think about what has happened or what will happen, not what is happening. The present is where we are right now. The dictionary defines the present as ” existing or occurring now“. Think about this for a moment. The present is what is happening in this moment. It’s so fleeting, just a moment, a flash, and then it’s over, now part of the past. So how do we become mindful? How do we live in the present? Not as easy as it sounds right? Most of us can relate to the feeling of our mind wandering, day-dreaming, creating lists of to-do’s, thinking about what we should have done…even those who regularly practice mindfulness meditation experience the drifting mind. That’s no accident! We are programmed to scan our environment for threats, to think about what may lay around the corner ready to pounce! Think of our ancient selves living in a world where wild animals thought of us as food! The problem with this in our modern world is that we are constantly bombarded with stressors, just watch 15 minutes of news and you’ll see what we... read more

Why Exercise?

  We hear over and over again how important exercise is to our health. But do we understand why? Why exercise? What you gain Exercise brings many benefits. Did you know that the simple act of adding exercise to your day can add years to your life? A large study from JAMA clearly shows that the more fit you are the longer you live. And it’s not just that you add years, but those years are healthier, with decreased risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke, high blood pressure and osteoporosis. The science is pretty clear – exercising gives you both time and a better quality of life.   Brain Benefits! What else can exercise do for you?  Studies show it can help depression, in fact exercise is often prescribed to help ease some of the symptoms of depression and overall, boost your mood! It’s also thought to lower the stress hormones coursing through your body, boost endorphins and improve sleep. Guidelines To achieve health benefits, adults between 18-64 years should accumulate at least 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity per week, in bouts of 10 min or more. Boost your benefits by adding muscle/bone strengthening activities using major muscle groups, at least two days per week. More physical activity provides greater health benefits! What is moderate-intensity? Do you feel yourself breathing somewhat harder and sweating a little? That’s moderate intensity! Think bike riding or brisk walking… What is vigorous-intensity? Are you breathing hard and really building up a sweat? Think of how you feel when running or cross-country skiing! Where do I begin? If you are already... read more

Sleep zzzzzzz…

Sleep matters. We all require adequate sleep to function well but so many of us are living sleep deprived. Up to 60% of us report that we have trouble sleeping a few nights a week – what secrets do the other 40% know about getting a good night’s rest? Consequences Poor sleep can lead to some pretty big consequences. We know that not getting enough sleep increases your risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and high blood pressure. It can also have psychological effects like depression, inattentiveness, and increased anxiety. Noticing weight gain?  Sleep issues seem to have an effect on the hormones that regulate hunger and slow down that metabolism. Craving carbs in the afternoon and evening? Researchers say that’s the hormones at work. Also, who feels up to exercising when sleep deprived! How many hours of sleep do we need? Our bodies are designed to generally require 7-9 hours of sleep a night. I know, I know, we all know people who swear that they only need 5 hours of sleep … but studies show these people aren’t functioning as well as they would if they slept for at least 7 hours. Good Sleep Practices How can I make sure I’m getting quality sleep? Here are a few tips to help you create a health sleep routine! Stick to a schedule! ( Yes, even on weekends!) Try to go to bed around the same time each night, it’s a myth that you can “catch up” on sleep by sleeping in on Sunday morning… Keep electronics out of the bedroom – the light emitted from phones, tablets and... read more

Tiny Habits

Have you ever started an exercise or healthy eating program feeling enthused and excited only to slide back into your old habits a few days later? You ask yourself why? You feel poorly about your choices, you vow that ‘tomorrow’ you’ll get it right. Unfortunately, tomorrow keeps getting pushed back and pushed back, leaving us feeling trapped in the cycle of wanting change but not knowing really how to start. There has been some excellent research in the last decade about how we can harness our habits to help us make lasting change! One of the easiest strategies to implement into your day is the concept of ‘tiny habits’. Tiny habits as described by BJ Fogg, a Behaviour Scientist at Stanford, are habits that: -you do at least once a day -that take you less than 30 seconds -that require little effort. Fogg provides a template for tiny habits: After I ( trigger), I will ( tiny habit).  It helps to use an anchor of sorts  ( something you do everyday that is routine ) eg. making coffee. So using the coffee anchor your template would look like this: After I make coffee, I will meditate for 30 seconds.   Making coffee, something you do each morning, becomes your trigger, your anchor to practicing daily meditation. Implementing tiny habits can lead to big change. It can act as momentum for other changes in your life. Meditation might lead to you feeling less stressed, which in turn might lead you to eat healthier during the day, which might lead to you taking a walk after dinner.  You can think of these... read more

Spring Cleaning

It’s no wonder why we often think of spring as a time of renewal, all that melting snow, increased daylight hours and warmer temperatures,  all encouraging us to leave the layers and hibernating of winter behind! This spring why not take the opportunity to look at several areas of your own life and make the most of the season! As we start to see the green shoots of new life appear we are also reminded of our own health and wellness. Here in Ontario, we’ll begin to see the wonderful local green produce, stalks of asparagus, bitter greens, and spring onions – all of which is so cleansing and full of micro-nutrients. Browse through the stalls of your local farmer’s market and see what is available in your own area! Add some bitter greens to your smoothie in the morning, roast up some asparagus with garlic, toss some new tender lettuce into your evening salad. Add spring to your plate! Spring offers more than you imagine! Do you feel weighed down after those cold, dark months? Take advantage of the longer days and warmer temperatures, lace up your shoes and take a walk outside. Try a local trail where you can admire the trillium flowers on the forest floor, listen for birdsong, revel in the warmth of the sun – it’s been a long winter with many hours spent inside – you deserve to bath yourself in nature! There is research indicating that spending time outdoors in nature can lower blood pressure and reduce stress hormones. Also, it’s been proven to help boost immunity and improve your mood! How... read more

Sitting is the new smoking?

Have you heard that sitting is the new smoking? Think of all those hours we spend sitting in front of our computers, on comfy couches binging on our latest fav series, and even the hours we spend sitting in cars commuting or shuttling our kids to and from activities. Researchers have looked at a number of studies and determined that those who sit for more than 8 hours a day with no physical activity have increased risks to their health similar to that of smoking! One study in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine found that prolonged sitting was associated with an increased risk of 34 chronic diseases including obesity, diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular disease. Who would think that sitting could be so hard on us? But no worries – there are some strategies you can use to minimize the effects of sitting. Move More! For every 30 min that you sit – take a few minutes to stand and move. Walk into the kitchen to get a glass of water, climb a set of stairs, stand and stretch, use your breaks to go for a short, brisk walk, dance around the living room to your favourite song. Anything goes that gets you moving! Looking for a stretch to help combat the effects of sitting? Try this!     Perhaps you’ve been given a few stretches during one of our chiropractic sessions. See what you can do to fit a few minutes of stretching in during the day. It can really help you get the most out of our sessions if you stretch between visits. Keep an eye on your own... read more

Thank You to All our Unstoppable You Retreat Supporters

I am so excited that this event is unfolding for another year! This project of bringing incredible woman together in such a beautiful space, Langdon Hall, is a dream come true!  Thank you to all of the supportive companies who have helped make the experience for our Unstoppable Woman truly unforgettable.     Kelly Shane   Nikki Price  ... read more

California Dreaming, Sound good to you?

It was July 2016 and I had just finished a run listening to the Earn Your Happy Podcast with Lori Harder. Lori Harder, for anyone who doesn’t know her, is a personal growth and development coach and she runs a retreat once a year in South Carolina called, Bliss Project. She was talking about her Bliss Project Retreat and I was moved to sign up. I just knew I had to go and be there. Sure enough, during a mediation at this powerful weekend, through goosebumps and tears I had the vision of running my own retreat like this in Waterloo Region. For the Women of our area. It would be a powerful weekend like this with incredible women in one room, connecting and digging deep into self discovery work, dreaming and visioning, being inspired by incredible speakers and honouring themselves and their bodies with movement. The vision was clear, I had to bring this powerful experience HOME! I came home to tell my close group what my goal was. They became my accountability through fear and self doubt. They were the women who over the course of the next few months would check in and ask what they could do to help. They supported me and encouraged me. Kept me on track. The vision came to reality that fall (7 months after my trip to California) on October 28th 2017 at the beautiful Langdon Hall Country House and Spa. This day, made for all the women who like me, feel the call, the need for a day like this, to get clear, to dig in and peel off layers of themselves, connect... read more