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  • Sierra Rathbun

Embrace Fitness as a Lifestyle: Edition 4

Welcome to the fourth edition of the Embrace Fitness as a Lifestyle Blog! In this edition we will be covering:

  • Why You Should Step out of Your Comfort Zone

  • Neomi's Story

  • Sierra Whiskey Fitness News

Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone

Whiskey River has always been an adventurous pup who will drag you up the steepest mountain. However, she is afraid of the strangest things like the Roomba and the broom. Even though she's a Golden Retriever, water has also never been her thing. We have tried kiddie pools, shallow rivers, lakeshores, etc. and she's never enjoyed it. Last weekend though she surprised me a ton and overcame her fear of water! We were swimming in the pool and in comes this fluffy golden monster ready to hangout with us. All of a sudden you hear a giant "SPLASH". She swam all over the pool with the help of the humans. Despite never really being interested in swimming, Whiskey stepped out of her comfort zone and tried something new. Turns out she might finally be embracing her Golden trait of being a water lover!

Why is it important to step out of your comfort zone?

Simply put, trying new things helps you discover what you like and don't like. Relating this back to fitness, many get stuck into doing the same thing over and over due to not knowing what to do in the gym. Often times, people may find themselves afraid to try new things due to fear of looking silly or being made the next meme on social media.

My best advice for this is to work with a personal trainer or go to a gym that offers the program you are interested in learning (i.e. martial arts). The benefit of working one on one with a personal trainer is you get to learn in a private and non-judgmental setting. The Coach is there to be your teacher and show you how to proper exercise mechanics. Additionally, you get programs that are customized to your goals. The benefit of working in a group setting is there is community support. Find a gym that has a welcoming environment and wants to see you be the best version of yourself.

Be like Whiskey and try something new.

Neomi's Story

Neomi is currently pursuing her Doctorate of Physical Therapy! Check out her interview below:

About you:

What is your name and what do you do for a career?

My name is Neomi Brereton and I am currently a 3 rd year physical therapy student at Daemen University in Buffalo, NY. I am currently completing my second clinical rotation of four in an intensive care unit within a hospital setting. My goal is to work with general musculoskeletal injuries as well as pelvic health. Having already taken courses in pelvic health about topics such as painful sex, urinary incontinence (unwanted leaking), constipation, pelvic pain etc. that affect both men and women, I’ve learned how common, debilitating, and unnecessary these conditions can be!

What are your hobbies?

My hobbies include playing golfing, cooking, baking, traveling, hiking, working out, dancing,

eating good food and enjoying a good craft beer.

What is your favorite food?

This is a tough one for me! I like different kinds of food. I especially like spicy food so to narrow it down my favorite Thai cuisine is pad kee mao. My favorite Caribbean dish would have to be jerk chicken with rice and peas. My favorite dish that I make myself would probably be Rasta pasta. My all-time favorite dessert would probably be chocolate mousse, but I do love almost anything chocolate.

What is your favorite life quote?

“Pour Into Yourself” – Coco Michele

This is my current lock screen and favorite life quote. I believe you can’t perform at your

best if you’re not listening to your body's needs. For me, that means I eat what I want in

moderation. If I want to have a beer I have a beer. If I need alone time I’ll stay home,

and if I need to sleep for 10 hours then that’s what I’ll do. I try my best every day to

make sure I am listening to and pouring into myself accordingly because this allows me

to bring my fullest self to others and keep a positive and healthy attitude in my life. 

Embracing Fitness as a Lifestyle:

What is your program or training style of choice that keeps you active?

I typically exercise 2-4 days per week. I love traditional lifts like squatting and deadlifting, but I also enjoy alternative training programs like yoga and pole dancing. My training schedule varies from some weeks where I might pole dance two days and only lift one day, to others where I lift two days and do one day of yoga. For me, doing exercises I enjoy while listening to my body is essential to staying active. Even on days I don’t exercise I may hike, go for a walk, or roller skate.

What is your strategy to incorporate balanced nutrition into your day to day life?

I believe in the idea of everything in moderation. There are times where I have dessert every

night but that doesn’t mean I eat a whole pint of Ben and Jerry’s or a huge slice of pie with 3

scoops of ice cream. I use smaller plates rather than full dinner plates to help with portion

control and practice the MyPlate suggestions from the USDA: Half of my plate is fruits or

veggies, and the other half of my plate is divided by protein and grains.

How do you stay motivated to continuously embrace fitness as a lifestyle?

It’s hard sometimes, especially when some weeks are busier than others. I’ll admit, there are

times when I want to give up completely. My first semester of PT school I did not initially

prioritize the gym well. Any motivation I did have was lost completely after an emergency

procedure restricted me from any bending or lifting movements. I felt awful from the pain and fatigue I experienced and was unable to do all the exercises I loved like squatting, deadlifting etc. due to the post procedure precautions. It was difficult to find the spark I needed as well as the time to get back in my groove of physical activity, especially considering amidst this struggle I was also trying to catch up and keep up with my schoolwork.

While I did do yoga occasionally, I knew there were other exercises I wasn’t doing that I could potentially do in the meantime. I had lost the motivation to program for myself and did not know how to get back on the wagon. I invested in a personal trainer to get me back on track because I needed a person to hold me accountable for going to the gym for a while until I could get myself back on my feet.

Do you have any tips for busy professionals struggling?

My number one tip is to always listen to your body. Getting the optimal amount of sleep that

your body needs is so important for being able to function at your best. If I get home from my clinical or studying and its 8:30 or 9pm already I will prioritize sleep over exercise because I know I work best with 8 hours. If I skip exercise too many days in a row in order to stay on track with my sleep schedule, I may do a quick yoga or a HIIT workout until I have the time to go to the gym. I’ve also found that keeping a few yoga or HIIT workouts saved in a YouTube playlist is so important for me in streamlining the process so that I don’t spend too much time trying to find one or give up because I feel too tired.

Also, don’t be afraid to set a timer. My ideal time in the gym is an hour and a half but somedays I set an alarm for an hour because that’s all the time I can give to the gym. I set timers to study sometimes to keep me motivated. For me this might look like studying for 30 minutes with no distractions followed by a small break or studying for an hour followed by a longer break.

Is there anything else you would like to share?

I’d be more than happy to answer any questions about anything physical therapy, recipes, beer recommendations etc. Follow me on Twitter @neosabi or on Instagram @neomi_lenora

Sierra Whiskey Fitness News

It's been a busy couple of week's since the last edition was published! I am halfway through my graduate summer classes and immersed in studying to become a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). Also, I finally finished the slant board that's been made popular by Knees Over Toes Guy!

Home Gym Design:

Home Gym Design services are now live on the website! If you need help building out your fitness space, please visit the link below:

Update to Functional Fitness Course:

I am wrapping up filming of exercises right now for the program! I want to make sure there is a ton of value in this for those that purchase the program. I originally estimated August 1st for release but I am extending that out until the 14th. I am a huge proponent of being quality driven.

Email or DM me "functional fitness" for a 10% off coupon for the course. This offer is only valid until August 14th. The course price is $99.

DIY Slant Board:

Slant Boards have been made popular by Knee Over Toes Guy. The current support for slant boards are decreasing knee pain by providing a means to strengthen the patellar tendons and the Vastus Medialis Oblique (VMO) muscle. The VMO is one of four quadricep muscles. I do not currently use this in programming for clients but I am studying the scientific benefits and disadvantages to this training modality.

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