One of the questions I get all the time is "how to you get yourself motivated" to....(fill in the blank). It could be exercise regularly, eat more healthfully, or change any other health habit that is a challenge. Unfortunately, we can't manufacture motivation. It's also not a great idea to WAIT to get motivated to do something important. You'll likely be waiting a long time! Oftentimes, if you can take ACTION first, the mind (motivation) can come on board second. Have you ever experienced that? Maybe you didn't feel like exercising but you got going anyway and that action improved your mood and outlook about it!
Whenever we want to make a change of any kind, psychologists tell us that we need to be able to tap into a "personally compelling motivator" in order to increase our chances of success. A reason that is PERSONAL and COMPELLING. It can't be vague or lackluster. Think through what YOUR personally compelling motivator might be for the habit you've been "meaning to change". Likely, you'll start feeling more excited to get going and can plan your next steps! Speaking of next steps, why not take my "Wellness Wake-Up Call Quiz" to give you that extra insight!
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What type of 85-year-old do you want to be?! What do you look like? What pursuits fill your day? How healthy are you? Go ahead, give it some thought! What did you say to yourself? Active…independent…still above ground (I get that one a lot!) After spending eight years surrounded by over 1,400 people with an average age of 85, I started asking younger populations that question and you’re probably not surprised to hear that most had never contemplated what life will be like when they are 85. When you are 25, you think you are going to live forever; 35, raising a young family; 45, gunning your career to the top; 55, starting to joke about aging aches and pains; and 65, perhaps starting to think about life at 85 because you might be caring for your own aging parent.
The reason I ask you to contemplate this question is that regardless of your current age, you are working toward your 85-year-old self right now, for better or for worse. I often use my son Jeff as an example when I talk about your 85-year-old self. When Jeff was in high school and I would nag him about keeping up with his homework or some other task, he would tell me “That’s future Jeff’s problem!” Completely aggravating as a mom, as you can guess, but he still managed to get by because he was a smart kid, but there comes a time when overload hits. It hit for Jeff when he got to college and was forced to make some changes! I ask you, Is your quality of life at the age of 85 your future self’s problem or are you willing to take ownership of it now? Many of us “get by” in our younger years without great habits, just like Jeff did in high school, but by our older years, the consequences start adding up, as they did for Jeff in college.
The years are flying by. In fact, at almost every age, people wonder and joke out loud, “How did I get this old?” We think we are “old” at 30, then 40, then 50, and then in future years, we WISH we could be “that young” again. Can you remember how you felt 20 years ago? Did that time go by quickly? What age will you be 20 years from now? Won’t those 20 years go by just as quickly—if not more so? Don’t wait! Think about thriving through the years!
While I worked in senior living communities, I met thousands of 85-year-olds, some with significant physical and cognitive ailments and serious challenges in daily living that made it difficult to enjoy their lives. I met other 85-year-olds who were finding much more satisfaction in life in whatever way they defined it—finding new loves, participating in competitive sports, or traveling the world! What is the biggest determinant of the difference? It’s not luck, genetics, or your habits at the age of 84. The largest determinants of your health at the age of 85 are your lifestyle habits in the decades leading up to that age--your twenties, thirties, forties, fifties, sixties, and seventies. In fact, up to 70% of how we age is determined by lifestyle!
What type of 85-year-old do you want to be and are your current habits going to get you there? If your current lifestyle needs a little adjustment, that’s ok. It’s never too early and it’s never too late! . I invite you to take my Wellness Wake-Up Call Quiz to find out where you are now and what can help you be the healthiest 85-year-old you can be!
What can BOOM mean in a positive sense? Let’s start with a WAKE UP CALL. Can you think of a time when you felt like life was giving you a wake-up call? Like you just had enough of the way you’ve been doing something or the results you’ve been getting (or not getting) in a relationship, a job, a project, or your health habits, perhaps. You just FEEL different, like NOW is the time. Time keeps ticking and if I keep going down this path, I don’t like what I see. Maybe it happened at a doctor’s appointment, or when you saw an unflattering photo of yourself, or when you hit a milestone birthday. You might know what I’m talking about – you just feel READY for a change…to MAKE a change. The day you realize you simply can’t afford not to make some changes.
Let me tell you about my client Ashley. She’s a real dynamo and a super-smiley chick! What was her BOOM? What made her decide to send me that email after watching my social media posts for a full year after we met at a business function? She was in the midst of a job transition and had a milestone birthday on the horizon. She shared with me that she’d struggled with her weight her whole life, was now at her highest weight ever and felt in her bones that “something has gotta give”. She wanted more energy especially for traveling, didn’t want to get out of breath as easily, and wanted to feel stronger. We’ve been working together for about seven months. She has lost 30 pounds and counting and her energy and strength have exploded. So much more in store for Ashley!
How about you? Are you tired of starting and stopping attempts at healthier habits (or worse —keeping your head in the sand)? Do you want to just DO THIS ALREADY?
Another example of how the word BOOM is used is “Boom. Done.” Have you ever heard someone use that phrase? It’s as if an action or success was a foregone conclusion. They may make a clapping hand gesture to go with it and you feel the resolve, the energy, the commitment.
My question to you is: are you ready to apply that mindset to your own health and fitness? The pandemic of 2020 has made many of us rethink our priorities and readjust how we spend our time. BOOM. It doesn’t have to be hard, complicated, or restrictive to get started on a healthier path. BOOM. There really are small habits that deliver big results for your body, brain, and energy level now and help you lead a longer, healthier life later. I invite you to take my Wellness Wake-Up Call Quiz to find out where you are now and what can help you take the next step!
I'm planning to make most of my posts one-minute videos - quick to watch and giving you perhaps some new ideas for how you can incorporate some healthier habits into your daily life. Let's see how this goes. Watch the video below to find out how I get myself to look forward to my elliptical workouts in the early morning!
Welcome to my very first blog post of “Quick Vitality Tips” where you’ll receive small doses of fitness and healthy living inspiration and practical tips for busy people. Many of my tips will also focus on staying healthy as we age, since none of us are having birthdays in reverse! I hope you’ll feel at home here, check out the rest of my website, and let me know if I can help you to keep fitness and wellness efforts in your life and maybe even motivate you to spread the love to others!
You'll notice that this tip isn't a quick tip at all! Before diving right into my business voice, you may be wondering a little about who Cathy is, personally. I’m a wife to my wonderful husband Matt, mother of three (Jenna: 23, Jeff: 21, and Matt: 17), and stepmother of another three (Emily: 27, Tyler: 22, and Dylan: 15). We live in Germantown, MD, in the suburbs of the Washington, D.C area. Emily lives on her own in PA and Jenna is enjoying a fantastic adventure working in Paris after graduating from College of Charleston in 2017. Tyler just graduated in 2018 from Virginia Military Institute and commissioned as an officer into the Army. He's finishing up Engineering BOLC training and will soon be stationed in Texas - super proud of him! I'm proud of Jeff also, working hard as a junior at Purdue and part of the Naval ROTC program. I've still got two high school boys at home full-time, Matt and Dylan, so it's nice to be needed while it lasts! And I can’t forget Biscuit – our adorable little cavachon (half cavalier King Charles spaniel and half bichon frise).
I have a large extended family and feel lucky that most of them live locally. Family and my faith are the most important things to me. I am a lover of water (the Chesapeake Bay area and the Maryland and Delaware beaches), country music, tiki bars, my dog Biscuit, and baking, especially pies.
Of course, people sometimes have a hard time reconciling pie baking with fitness/wellness but it absolutely works. We all know that most things can fit into a healthy life in moderation and to me, pie is essential!
I started my first business, Fitness InSight more than a few years ago when my children were small. My reason was simple – I saw a need for advice and practical tips for people who were struggling to find a fitness plan that they could stick to and I had plenty of information and motivation to share. For a while, I focused on fitness tips for busy moms because, well, I was one! I wrote and published The Busy Mom's Fitness Guide and it’s still a great resource for moms who need help figuring out a fitness plan. After a while, I put Fitness InSight on hold and re-joined the 9-5 scene as director of wellness for a retirement community. I learned a lot about wellness for seniors that is remarkably applicable to all ages and now I’m getting back to my entrepreneurial roots with Inspiring Vitality. I've got more motivation than ever to share what I’ve learned along the way!
The purpose of this blog is to share quick nuggets of insight and motivation in all aspects of fitting in fitness and wellness - tying in my theme that it's never too early or too late to make small changes that can have a big result in your health! I’ll be sprinkling in bits about my home life and hobbies so that you don’t forget that I’m coming from a real life with its ups and downs just like you. I’m hoping my readers will relate to the examples I use and consider a new perspective that can make a difference in their daily lives. Quite simply, I’m here to help! If you’ve been struggling to keep fitness and wellness habits on your radar and in your life, then you’ve come to the right place. I invite you to come with me on this journey!
Cathy's Quick Vitality Tips
Because it's never too early or too late to make small changes that can have a big impact on your strong body, sharp brain, and endless energy!