Tag Archives: Better Health

Here’s to Women over 50!

Introducing you to my blog’s new focus on the maturing woman, the woman in transition:

  • A new empty nester,
  • a widow,
  • a divorcee,
  • being downsized, or
  • flat-out fired or
  • none of the above.

Maybe you’re just looking for a reboot and you don’t even know why … Welcome!

What is it that happens to us when we hit that number? Maybe for you it was 50, for someone else it might have been 55 or 65. Whatever the age, every woman I’ve ever met, has an age where they start to reassess their life, and most importantly, the life they envision going forward.

Before I started, I wanted to know if I was on the right track, if I what I thought women wanted was even close. After all, I’m just one maturing woman, so I asked around. I asked on Facebook, LinkedIn and Next Door. I asked friends and colleagues. Here’s what they said:

  • peace of mind
  • even keel
  • simplicity
  • spiritual life
  • weight loss
  • worry and stress free
  • and the award for the most popular answer goes to, “A secret man that sneaks into the house and cleans while I sleep.”

I’ve identified a few categories that I think will cover most of it, but I’m happy to add to it if you think of something else:

  1. Emotional
  2. Physical
  3. Environment
  4. Spirituality
  5. Finances
  6. Relationships
  7. Social Life
  8. Lifelong Learning

So, we’re going to start the journey on Monday, July 22nd with a post from the Environment category: Simplify. I hope you’ll join me!


What? I Need to Pack Green Stuff?

If you were starting on a trip then you’d probably have done some planning and packed accordingly. Starting on your journey to better health & weight loss is no different. You must plan and pack.

What are you going to pack? Nutrients! How are you going to do that? By adding in fruits and vegetables. There are a number of ways to achieve this.

  • Salads. First of all, salads are available everywhere so that helps make it easy. Add in a salad of mixed lettuces and greens with a lot of added goodies like snow peas, carrots, tomatoes, orange slices, strawberries, cucumbers, avocado, peppers, sprouts, onions, red cabbage, jicama, pineapple, apples, celery, broccoli, pears, cranberries (Not too many. There’s added sugar on dried cranberries.), grapes … the list is endless. Be adventurous and try new things!
    Top it off with a tablespoon of chopped nuts, a healthy oil and vinegar dressing and you’ll be packing in the nutrients!
  • Sliced veggie trays aren’t just for company. Bring one home with your greensweekly shopping and set it out while you cook dinner, or between meals as a great snack. Buy or make some hummus for dip and you’ll have a powerhouse of nutrition!
  • To start your day, or for your afternoon break, have a green smoothie. For a great outline of how to create a smoothie click here.
  • Add greens to stir fry’s, omelets and soups. Buy a bag of washed, cut greens and toss it in your freezer just the way you brought it home from the store. When frozen, smash it down to about half its size so it takes up less room. That way it’s convenient when you want to add it in.
  • Fresh fruit, combined with an ounce ofhealthworkskc, almonds, nuts, emotional eating, cravingyour favorite nuts is the perfect snack. The  fiber, protein and healthy fat found in nuts slows down the absorption of the sugar from the fruit giving you long-lasting satisfaction!
  • Brush veggies with Extra Virgin Olive oil and put it on the grill … Inside or out. I love my Foreman Grill!
  • Instead of drinking fruit juice eat the fruit with your breakfast. You’ll get the benefit of the natural fiber that’s lost when you pour your fruit from a carton or can.
  • Make frozen fruit pops by blending up your milk of choice with your favorite fruits. Pour into molds and enjoy on a warm day. I love to mix orange and pineapple with coconut milk and a touch of vanilla … YUM!
  • Roast your veggies. If you haven’t tasted the difference, you brussels-sproutsneed to try it. Roasted vegetables have an incredibly rich flavor. Just Google ‘roast cauliflower’ or ‘roast carrots’ or ‘roast vegetables’ for temps and times.
  • Don’t rely on packaged goods that say, “12 servings of fruits and vegetables per serving” as a way of getting goodness into your diet. There’s no telling how many nutrients are left after all of the processing, so opt for fresh when at all possible and if not, go for frozen. What I tell my clients is, “Eat real food! You know, that stuff that looks like food.”

None of the above will happen just by reading this post and thinking about it. You’ll have to sit down and figure out what and when you are going to make some of these additions and then shop accordingly. Planning for your journey by packing in fresh, whole nutrients is just what you need to make it to your destination with high energy, great health and a new level of happiness!

See you on the road,
Nancy Oglesby, The Practical Health Coach

How to REALLY Create an Exercise Habit

You know from my story in the previous post that I got healthy changing one or two things at a time and taking some time to get used to the changes before moving onto another.

In the past, I’d try to do aerobics or strength training three times a week. I’d get off track by using that extra day more than once. You know what I’m talking about: Workout M/W/F or T/R/S and there’s an extra day whether it’s Saturday/Sunday or Sunday/Monday and I’d say, on Thursday, “I’ll just take today as my extra day.” I’d say it again on the following Tuesday and before long I had no routine at all.

How did I solve that? Well, I tried being strict with myself, but without accountability it didn’t work. What did work was working out every day … No off day to conveniently reschedule as the mood struck. Guess what? It worked! I got into a really nice routine and now the only days I don’t work out are the ones that have scheduling issues. That works out to about once every 1-2 weeks.

I discovered a new approach to staying committed to walking every day by not:

  • Making a big deal out of it. No fancy workout clothes or creating an Excel spreadsheet to track progress.
  • Insisting on setting any big distance goals or speeds every day

Health & Nutrition Community Neighborhood Wellness Stress Relief

Waiting for the day the trees are this lush again. This is my street!

The plan that I credit for creating my daily habit, and that of several clients and students, was to set the goal of walking out 5 minutes and back 5 minutes (or just walk around the block). My block is .6 miles and that’s all I HAVE to do.

Why does this work? It builds the habit of making time to do some intentional exercise every day. For some of you 10 minutes of walking might seem like a stretch. That’s okay. Set the goal smaller. Walk to the end of the block and back. Just set a goal that feels small so that you do it daily.

Push yourself occasionally … Let it evolve into 7 minutes out and back, 10 minutes out and back. But always remember, especially on the days you just don’t feel like doing it, that you only have to walk around the block.

If 10 minutes seems to short, don’t worry about it … It’s the minimum. The importance of the small goal is to create the daily habit. Where you take it when you get outside is up to you, but you always only have to walk 10 minutes. It’s tough to argue with that!

I started doing this the summer Kansas City experienced a record number of days in the 100’s. I ended up walked about 3 miles at 6AM and another 2 at 9PM on a lot of days. Every day I told myself I only had to walk around the block.

Remember, nothing fancy. No big plans. Keep it simple! Walk out. Walk back. Daily. 10 minutes. Where you take it from there is up to you. The end goal is to build the habit of moving daily.

Building the habit teaches you that you can. That’s huge.

Here’s to the journey!
NancyO, The Practical Health Coach


Tell Me I Can’t

Doesn’t she epitomize Claiming Your Power? I found it here: http://www.neopets.com/~Quaneshi

Tell me I can’t and I’ll work harder to prove that I can. It’s just who I am. I’ve found a way to put that rebellious streak to good use: When a food calls to me, candy or potato chips, and I give in and eat too much, I buy another one and put it on the table where I’ll see it all day, every day. Every time I walk through my house I see it and each time I give it the old evil eye and say, “YOU will not win this battle … I will!”

It works. I’ve found that I do better when I know the enemy and I look it right in the eye. I like having it where I can see it because there’s little chance of it sneaking up and surprising me. Some examples from over the years:

  • I hung a Dunkin Donut on a pushpin in my studio in the 80’s. I labeled it the ‘First Donut I Didn’t Eat.’ When I left that job two years later the donut was still on the pushpin looking exactly as it had the day I put it up there. Yuck!
  • I quit smoking, a two-pack-a-day habit, cold turkey, with a carton of cigarettes on the passenger seat of my car. Totally successful. Fourteen years smoke-free!
  • I bought Easter candy on sale, ate several pieces while in a total fog, came out of it and put the rest in a candy dish on my dining room table … dusty now!

I stared the enemy right in the eye and claimed my power! Exhilarating!

(As an aside, I can’t tell you I’d be able to walk by my Mom’s Fried Chicken but since I’m the only one who makes it anymore I’m pretty safe … from buying pastured chicken to preparing it is a long time to get over a craving. Occasionally I go through the process and it tastes a little bit like heaven!)

The moral of the story? Know your enemy; Find your fighter’s stance; Claim your power!

It’s important to learn the difference between foods you love and foods that trigger actual binges. You win against food addictions one battle at a time. As you learn and eliminate the foods that trigger binges and cravings the enemy army becomes smaller and weaker while you become stronger both physically and psychologically.

Once you know the enemy you can make conscious choices to eat the foods you love. I find that just knowing a specific food has the capacity to cause massive cravings keeps me clear of it 99% of the time. I also know that when I choose to eat it I need to be on top of my game to prevent a landslide of unhealthy eating.

If you have trouble finding your fighter’s stance or discerning the difference between trigger foods and foods you love, consider hiring a Certified Health Coach. I respect each individual as uniquely designed and recognize that what works for one person isn’t necessarily the answer for the next. I will create a Treasure Map to Better Health during your FREE LifeChanger™ Session. Visit my website at www.healthworkskc.com/contact for more information.