7 New Year’s Resolutions to Ditch This Year

t’s a timeless tradition: the New Year Resolution.

We resolve to make them by year’s end and then, as it approaches the end of January, suddenly, we’re completely off track. The key to making those resolutions stick is to form and word them like an actual habit and keep the resolutions simple. Another way to stay on target? Recruit a friend! A friend of mine and I emailed each other our resolutions and reached out on a quarterly basis to see how we were both doing and hold each other accountable. Truly, the buddy system works! Where I failed in 2018 with my resolutions was making too many. In typical fashion, I bit off more than I could chew and at times, my resolutions were too complex. Overall though, I did pretty well considering. For 2019 however, I’m going to stick to just a few and keep it simple.

Another reality of resolutions is we often make ones that are not realistic or concretely helpful. So, to all you single mommas out there trying to pin down your resolutions and goals for 2019, here are some resolutions you can kick to the curb or revise, and exchange for resolutions that are:

  1. Easier to follow and make habit
  2. Realistic and positive

Let’s get started!

REDO THE LOSE WEIGHT RESOLUTION

Many women (and men) make the “I’m losing weight goal,” only to be sidelined by well, cookies, cakes and leftover macaroni and cheese their kids didn’t finish.

Read More: 7 New Year Resolutions to Ditch This Year

Just DO It,

Laura

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The State of Wellness

Being well. Eating organic. Avoiding GMO’s. Making sure you’re part of a Crossfit “box.” Never using anything that has toxins on your skin. Doing yoga at least twice a week. Having a life coach.

If you are not taking your wellness seriously…you are ill! Incredibly ill. 

And a failure as a human being, completely, don’t you know?

Being well isn’t just feeling healthy and happy these days. It’s a full on business, complete with Kool-Aid sold to you at sometimes, exorbitant prices, with the goal of you being the most fit, green, and organic human being on the Earth. Forget keeping up with the Joneses; these days, it’s “out-rawing” your neighbor and making sure your home is so Feng Shui’d out that you are the most “well” person on the planet. These days it’s ensuring you can out “burpee” and bench press your fellow citizen and then brag that you haven’t ate a cooked piece of meat or used a skincare product with the word “paraben” on the label in order to know that indeed:

You. Are. Well!

Don’t get me wrong. I love running, the gym, ballet and eating healthy, but you won’t catch me going vegan or meditating every second. Although truth be told, a little meditation would be good for me! The fact is being well and healthy is very important but we can’t have a life coach for every move we make and we can’t squat and burpee our way down every single hallway and through every event in our life. We can’t always keep calm and Zen, mantra-ing our way through the day with a side of Yoga and essential oil. Sometimes, you need a little caffeine, curse words, chocolate and a complete meltdown on your couch.

Read More: The State of Wellness

A Little Caffeinated & A Little Zen, Too

Laura

5 Things You Learn About Yourself While Running

I love doing a variety of fit activities, whether it’s a HIIT class, ballet, weight training, barre, running, or what have you. Each activity has a different body and mind benefit. When I dance, I can only think about each movement and everything else melts away. When I run . . . I can think about, well, everything.

Out of all the fit things I love to do, I find I do my best thinking while running. Perhaps it’s because running is something that comes automatically without much thought. Sure, you have to avoid tripping over a rock or slipping, but the movement is instinctual . . . fight or flight, right?

As I run, I find that my thoughts are clear and logical, and it allows me an emotional release. Whether I am making up solutions as I run miles or releasing feelings, I learn so much about myself while running. We all can. If we solely ran for the physical benefits, we’d probably find something easier to do, but there are so many mental benefits from running that you can’t help but be addicted to what running does to your brain.

1. You Learn How You Really Feel

When you run, don’t be surprised when every emotion comes pouring out of your body. Happiness and joy. Rapid quick thoughts of anxiety. Tears of sadness or joy. I can count on many fingers the amount of times I have been running and crying. Perhaps it should be my hashtag.

 

Read More: 5 Things You Learn About Yourself While Running

How the Gym Saved Me From My Depression

The past year has tested every part of my being and reached into just about every corner of my world. Whether it was work, my divorce, or parenthood, this year has been a marathon of events in which the bottom line always required that I just keep on running . . . or swimming. Depends on your sport of choice. Wink.

I was moving. I was dealing with a difficult person. A child undergoing many changes. Job changes. Health issues. Money issues. It felt like once one thing had resolved, another major issue was waiting for me right on deck. There were certain times in which I was so stressed, eating was almost impossible. My stomach decided to take on all of my stresses for my brain, and I just wasn’t myself.

I wondered quite a few times why this was happening. But as time has gone on, I have realized that no matter the reason, I am getting stronger and tougher, mentally and physically.

After my Summer of “no food,” I finally felt well enough and looked to the gym with open
arms; it was like I was reuniting with a lover. The gym had always been a great source of
stress relief and fun for me, and so I was looking forward to getting back to “picking
things up and putting things down.”

It wasn’t just that working out helped increase those happy, feel-good hormones in my mind. It wasn’t just that being able to do real push-ups for the first time in my life got me into shape.

The gym saved me from succumbing to depression. It kept me from giving up.

Read More: How the Gym Saved Me From My Depression

6 Life Lessons I Learned From Ballet

I always wanted to dance. Growing up, I wished to be enrolled in ballet but at the time, my parents couldn’t afford to send me. My older sisters had gone before me but financial fortune was not on my side. Once I hit high school and my parents could afford it, I started classes right away. When I went to college, I took more classes but still, I wasn’t good enough to make a living from dance so I eventually stopped.

But ballet is just so beautiful, it didn’t matter to me if I was the best or the worst. It felt great doing it. So finally, after a divorce, two moves, health issues, and a year from hell, I signed up again for an adult ballet class.

For just one hour a week, my financial stress, single-mom woes, dating dilemmas, ex-husband hassles, and other life stuff just melts away. My noisy brain is silent and strictly focused on assemblé, battement, and more. Every motion has my complete attention. I can’t bother to be sad, stressed, or think about the 50 million things on my to-do list. All I can be is in that very pose or position, whether in center or at the barre. Ballet’s beauty goes beyond the confines of the classroom; there are so many life lessons I have learned from my time dancing.

Read More: 6 Life Lessons I Learned From Ballet

 

Dance On,

Laura

5 Eating Habits to Kick to the Curb in 2016

As much as you may be committed to your health and fitness, it’s easy to get a little lazy about eating well, especially around the holidays. Who wants to say no to all the sweets, all the time? Not me! But with the New Year almost here and bathing suit season coming soon, (Memorial Day is only five months away!), perhaps we need to give ourselves a swift kick in the butt and kick these five poor eating habits to curb along with all our other baggage from 2015!

1. No Breakfast

I don’t care if you’re not a breakfast person. Get hungry! Eating small, frequent meals will rev up your metabolism. If you wait until lunch to take your first bite of the day, I bet you any amount of money that you end up eating more than you should. You overeat because your body needed food hours before your brain started sending hunger signals. Once you create the habit of starting your day with a small breakfast, your brain will begin to send more regular signals you need to pull out a fork or spoon in the a.m.

Read More: 5 Eating Habits to Kick to the Curb in 2016

Take Out the Trash,

Laura

5 Common Lies We Tell Ourselves When Trying to Lose Weight

When trying a diet, as you’re attempting to stick to a program, it’s not unusual to tell yourself little “lies” to either feel better about your choices or to make excuses for why you haven’t fully committed to getting the body you’ve dreamed of. And I’m not talking about becoming a supermodel overnight. But it’s not surprising to hear folks tell themselves little “lies” to compensate for not being where they want to be fitness-wise.

Here are some common “lies” you might get caught up in as you attempt to make a “new you” for 2016, and some tips to stop the BS — so you can start dealing with the truth and rock a more fit you in the New Year.

Read More: 5 Common Lies We Tell Ourselves When Trying to Lose Weight

Believe it & Achieve it,

Laura

The Pain of a Miscarriage and the Healing Power of Yoga

My very first pregnancy was a miscarriage, and it felt like a cruel joke. I had been very sick to my stomach and barely eating. I was out of work and my OBGYN kept sending me for ultrasounds as he wasn’t sure if the pregnancy was viable. When I got the bad news, I was told my pregnancy had most likely been “over” and non-viable for probably two weeks, yet my body apparently was refusing to miscarry on its own. My doctor decided it would be best if I underwent a D&C, a procedure to remove the contents of the uterus, rather than continuing to wait for my body to do the job on its own. To make matters worse, I had to wait six days for the procedure, which was torture.

The D&C was relatively simple and didn’t cause me much pain beyond some minor cramping afterward (some women get horrible cramps so I was lucky), but it was the feelings that I was left with that hurt so much. My doctor didn’t have a reason for why I had miscarried and apparently this is common. According to American Pregnancy, “Studies reveal that anywhere from 10-25 percent of all clinically recognized pregnancies will end in miscarriage. Chemical pregnancies may account for 50-75 percent of all miscarriages.

Read More: The Pain of a Miscarriage and the Healing Power of Yoga

Time Heals All (Sometimes),

Laura

8 Reasons Moms Need Exercise

Exercising is good for everyone, but moms? Well, we need it the most dare I say! It’s not just about losing the baby weight or being able to rock a bikini if you so desire. No, that’s not why exercising is so crucial for moms. It’s not just the health benefits to your body either. Here are eight reasons moms need to exercise today. Are you ready? Grab your yoga pants, water bottle, and earbuds and get ready to sweat!

1. Stress Reduction

As mothers, we tend to worry a lot all while holding it together either at the house or at the workplace or both! Exercising is a great way to reduce your stress and release pent-up feelings without saying a word.

Read More: 8 Reasons Moms Need Exercise

Let’s Get Physical,

Laura

Notes from a Gym Yenta

Hi.

I am your friendly Gym Yenta, here to tell you a few things to either A: not do during your work out or B: to avoid when at the gym.

Yenta: (yen-tah) a Yiddish word for an old Gossip.

 

I feel my advice is absolutely pertinent because I am 100 pounds of muscle, and 50 pounds of big mouth.

For some reason, even though I have excellent form, no one wants to take workout advice from a peanut. Fools.

Listen to my warnings and advice, and you will find yourself in a zen moment when at the gym…

#1 Dumb Ass: Quit hanging on to the treadmill while you walk/run

Unless you are checking your heart rate, don’t hang on to the treadmill. Not only are you not working as hard because you’re using your upper body to keep you going, but you would also get a better workout if you slowed down your speed, and relied on your core/legs, etc to keep you going.

Don’t hang. You are NOT a monkey–you’re a human.

#2 Wear Sneakers and Gym Pants

Look, not everyone has money to drop on a pair of cool gym kicks, nor does everyone have the desire to rock Adidas, UnderArmour, etc…I get it. However, working out in your flip flops is just asking someone to drop a large 50 lb weight on your foot…or for you to slip will walking on the treadmill.

And how in God’s name, does anyone move properly in jeans? I mean, jeans don’t breathe very well, so I can’t imagine your balls being too comfy as you exercise in your jeans.

Please leave the leather at home also.

If you think I am kidding you, I am not.

#3 More Fashion advice from a big mouth Yenta:

Please don’t wear anything that shows off your testicles. I am sure you have fathered many children with possibly, many women, but I don’t need to see your nuts.

Thanks.

#4 Bad Pick-up Lines

The other day, a man told me he liked the way I text. Really? If this is what men are using to try and get into a woman’s pants these days, I imagine there will be a rise in lesbianism, which is already a good idea considering the lack of quality men in this world.

If you want to talk to a woman while working out, a hello is much better than telling someone she texts nicely. My other real favorite is “Oh you’re lifting heavy over there!”

Dummy, I am small. I know I am not lifting heavy weights, and so do you. Your little comment is so cliché; everyone likes to comment on the peanut using the Smith machine. Find something basic like hello, or original like, “When you lift, you never have a constipated face like everyone else. It’s so charming.”

#5 Slow Down, Speedy

If you are lifting your weights with the speed of a cokehead, you need to slow down. If you are jerking your weights around like you’re doing some tribal dance, you need to consult a trainer to help you with proper form. Lower the pound, and slow down on the movements pal.

#6 Smelly and Stinky

Please do not have a cigarette right before you enter the gym, and also, avoid the perfume. I can’t breathe when your stinky butt is around me, and nor can anyone else. Sure, it’s a free country and you can smoke or wear as much Chanel No. 5 as you like, but no one likes you. We think you smell. Have a cigarette in your car or wear perfume to your prom, not to my gym.

#7 Put Back your weights

When I have to move a total of 300 pounds off a machine in order to use it, I basically just burned about 600 calories. If you’re not strong enough to put the weights you used back, lower the amount of weight or be prepared to have me smush you with the stuff you left for me to put away. I move my weights–move yours!

#8 Wipe, wipe, wipe

You are sweaty and nasty. I don’t want all of your bacteria on the machines I am using. Clean it up, douche. For all I know, you may have left some of your sperm in your sweat sample and I would prefer to not mingle with your DNA.

I hope you all enjoyed this tips from a Gym Yenta who has belonged to a total of 9 gyms.

Do yourself a favor and look around the next time you’re exercising…you’re bound to see some funny stuff!