Cross-Training Your Brain

We all know and understand how important it is to train our bodies to get and keep them strong and healthy, but how often do you think about training your brain?

In my job as a certified older adult fitness instructor I do a lot of work with brain training – whether my participants realize it or not. I tend to joke about it telling them to make sure their brains are turned on before I start, and they laugh and giggle when they can’t follow the pattern. They may not realize that those sections of their class are me training their brain, helping to keep them sharp and to ward off dementia – but in reality that’s what I’m doing. Working to help them improve their memory and helping to prevent memory loss, all while having fun.
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Should You Exercise When You Are Sick?

We are heading into cold and flu season, and as I write this I am sick with a chest cold that took me OUT for a number of days. I’m still not feeling awesome, and am trying to still teach as many of my classes as I can without making myself worse, which can be difficult.

So here is the skinny. If you have the flu or any type of stomach bug – stay the heck home! Nobody wants you out and you definitely have zero business exercising! When it comes to colds, if it is a head cold you can still exercise if you feel up to it, and it may actually help you get over the cold faster. But if you are feeling tired and worn down, your best bet is resting. It also depends on the type of exercise, few people with a head cold are going to feel comfortable in downward dog, so you might feel like skipping your weekly yoga class. However, you might feel just fine doing some strength training, or even a light cardio class.

If you have a chest cold (i.e. me), your respiratory system is compromised and you really should stay away from exercise until you are well.


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Zumba Mega Mix 50

What’s a better way to kick of the week than with new tunes? It’s a new month and that means new Zumba music! And this is when I realize the shame that I still haven’t used and songs off the ZIN from last month. Yikes. Gotta add that to my to-do list. Anyway, let’s check out what’s on this month’s Mega Mix shall we?

Find out what music is on Zumba fitness mega mix 50

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Look In The Mirror And #OwnIt All! + A Giveaway

A few weeks ago I shared with you how I was inspired by Special K’s new #OwnIt campaign to start being nicer to myself. That I was going to honour my body and #OwnIt instead of punishing it when things didn’t go the way I wanted, and I wanted you to do the same.

Today I’m back to share what changes I’ve made, and how I #OwnIt.

97% of women have an, “I hate my body,” moment every single day.

Are you one of them? Statistics tell me you probably are. And it doesn’t have to be just hating something about the way you look. More time than not the things I hate about my body are internal things – things you can’t see, but I can feel and have to deal with on a daily basis. I’ve got a whole host of “stupid” body parts I can hate on without ever needing to look in the mirror. My stupid lung, digestive system, hormone levels, and fibromyalgia to name a few. But what good does hating on these things really do? I’ll tell you, it is as good as hating the way your arms look, the size of your chest, or the circumference of your stomach – no good at all.

So while I think the #1 purpose of the #OwnIt campaign is to learn to love yourself on the outside, I’m taking it a little bit further and trying hard to love my inside as well.

How do I do that? By making sure I am doing what I need to do to take care of myself. I’ve been really lax about taking vitamins this year, so I went out and bought some gummy vitamins (because I knew I wouldn’t forget to take my vitamins if they reminded me of candy!), and have started having smoothies regularly again.

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Halloween Dance Fitness: Thriller

What is Halloween week without Thriller? I mean really! I can’t NOT do it. I only bring it out once/year and only for a handful of classes and it would seem almost criminal to not to the most iconic Halloween song of my generation.

Because I’m a super nerd, I know the entire Thriller dance from the music video but that is much too complicated and involved for teaching in Zumba, so I’ve created this routine which simplifies it down to around 6 moves.


Because it’s a longer song and the moves don’t follow the Zumba formula I generally take 2-3 minutes to go over all 6 moves before I start the song so everyone has an idea of what is about to go down. 😉 This is also the only regular Zumba song where I will verbally cue now and then to tell people what is coming next. Every time I’ve done it I’ve been really impressed with all my participants – in fact this week I taught it to my after school program kids (mostly grade 4’s) and they were great!

Unlike the other routines I shard this week, this one does take a fair amount of musical memorization, but as long as you know the basic moves it’s easy to tell when the chorus is coming up and otherwise you just repeat as you need.

The video is pretty laughable, you seem much less insane when doing these types of things with other people around you. Or at least I like to think you do. 😉

If you give it a try let me know how it goes!

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