Apples, Pears, Bananas, Oh My!

Bodies, let’s talk about them.  We were blessed with these amazing vessels that hold all of the things that allow us to function better than any man made machine.  So why do so many people have such dislike for them?

The media and Hollywood have been blamed for body issues, especially in women, as long as I can remember.  I’m not really into blaming others for our own insecurities, we’re adults, own your feelings.  If you’re comparing yourself to an image of someone who is paid to look a certain way, and who you know has had some photo-shopping, that’s on you.

I think most people wish they had a particular body type or looked a certain way, that’s OK, it’s not OK to hate the body you have.  We’re all shaped differently, just as we all have different facial features, different opinions, different personalities, these are the things that make us wonderful and unique.  It would make for a pretty boring world if we were all cut from the same mold.  The fact is, we all are genetically predisposed to having a certain “shape”. You can probably look at family members and have a pretty good idea of what that shape is – although this is not always true, most of the time we are similar in shape to at least one family members.  It’s called genetics and you can’t change it.

What you can change is your attitude and how you feel about and treat you body.  If you feed your body soda, cheetos and pizza on a regular basis and live a sedentary life, you can expect to have excess body fat. If you feed that same body nutritious, whole foods and exercise regularly, your body will fall into a healthy size and shape – for YOU!  This doesn’t always look the same for everyone.  I know people who would be referred to as “skinny-fat”, they look skinny/thin on the outside but on the inside their bodies are not functioning optimally and they do not have strong bones and muscles.  On the other hand there are a lot of people who are much larger on the outside, but are strong and healthy.  It’s co cliche, but you can’t judge a book by its cover.

Think about how your body looks on the inside, not about a thigh gap or a particular size.  Control the things you can control and let the chips fall where they may.  Eat nutritious, whole foods, exercise for a strong heart and body, then let nature take it’s course.  Don’t  worry about looking like someone else or having whatever body type is “in” at the moment, celebrate a healthy, strong body.  Do your best to take care of the vessel you’ve been given and move on, there is so much more to life than the number on the scale!

Drink up!

One of the best things you can do for your body is to stay hydrated.  A person can survive up to 3 weeks without food, but will perish after 3 days without water.  If you follow me for any length of time, you’ll soon learn I preach “hydration”.

We all wake up dehydrated, start your day by giving your body what it needs, the rest of the day will fall into place.  Try starting you day with a bottle or glass of water, at least 8 oz.  Drink your water before any other sugary or caffeinated drinks and before eating.  Think about it, you’ve gone all night without fluids – for most, that is 7-9 hours, you’re dehydrated!

Hydration also helps you identify TRUE hunger signals.  Did you know, most of the time when we THINK we are hungry, we’re really just dehydrated?  Not sure if your body needs fluids or food?  Drink a bottle of water, wait 20 minutes, do you still feel hungry?  If so, feed that belly!  Most of the time you will find the water has satisfied the urge to eat.  If you eat every time you think you’re hungry, you could be consuming hundreds of unnecessary calories, when all you needed was a bottle of water.

How much is enough?  Forget the one size fits all, 8, 8 oz glasses per day.  Try to consume between .5-1 oz of water per every pound.  So, if you weigh 150 lbs, aim for 75-150 oz of water per day.  If you live in a hot climate or exercise a lot, stay on the higher end of that range.  If you live in a cooler climate and are sedentary the lower end will work for you.

Staying well hydrated has so many health benefits, unfortunately this is over looked by many.  Staying hydrated revs up our cellular processes and metabolism, it also promotes good kidney and digestive functions.  These are all things we can’t see, but there are many you can see – check out the info-graphic below.  Raise your bottles and drink to good health – cheers!


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Find your balance

Welcome to Stay Balanced Yoga’s blog!  I have so much to share and no idea where to start –  I guess it’s best to start from the beginning.

The beginning. I’m Jennifer, I’ve been a fitness and health enthusiast for most of my life.  I wanted to be a registered dietitian when I was younger, however I followed my Father’s advice and pursued a business degree.  I graduated from college and found a full time, big girl job at 22 years old.  I had great benefits and could pay the rent, not bad for a young, single girl.  I kept telling myself, next year I will make a shift and pursue career in the healthcare field.  Like everyone else, I had ups and downs, a failed marriage, infertility, the death of a sister and my parents – then one day, I was celebrating my 15 year work anniversary, where had the time gone?  I had lived a healthy life, obtained group exercise certifications, taught fitness classes for the free gym memberships, but never made the “shift” I promised myself I would.

The “shift”.  During the most difficult times of my life I turned to Yoga.  You see, I am not your typical “yogi”,  I am a very “type A’, organized, regimented, everything has a place, everything needs to be in order, stay on schedule type of girl.  I don’t think anyone would have pegged me as a “yogi”, including me, but I really believe it saved me.  When I practiced Yoga it was the only time when my brain would settle down, it was the only time when I felt peace, the only time when I felt like I would be OK.  I was hooked.  I began to expand my wellness knowledge to include a deeper understanding of Yoga and added “Yoga Instructor” to my resume.  Then, I met and married my true soulmate, he couldn’t have been more supportive of me and my desire to help others live longer, healthier lives.

It’s happening!  My husband built me a beautiful yoga studio and “Stay Balanced Yoga” was born.  I continue to deepen my practice and teach several yoga classes a week as well as private and duet sessions.  I teach group fitness classes at two local fitness centers and I obtained my weight management certification from The American Council on Exercise and added a lifestyle program called “Walk the Walk” to my business.

While I still go to the office Monday through Friday, when I come home I’m working on a business I love.  I’ve found my balance and I can help you find yours!

Check in with me daily for articles and information on diet, exercise, health and well-being.  I’ve waited to so long to share what I know, what I’ve studied, what I’ve practiced – here I go, come along for the ride!