6 Ideas for Turning Your Bedroom Into a Sanctuary

Relaxing with Candles

“Do you want to feel tired in the morning? Do you want to feel like a truck rolled over you, then backed up and rolled over you again? Then fall asleep habitually on the sofa. If you have become a “sofa sleeper” by choice, your body has been conditioned to accept mediocre rest. No matter how warm and huggable that sofa feels, your body needs a place prepared for rest”…Read more of 6 Ideas for Turning Your Bedroom into a Sanctuary in LiveLiving Christian Health and Wellness Magazine.

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December 22, 2010 at 9:47 am Leave a comment

The Side Plank with Reach for Flat Abs, Balance and a Strong Back

I enjoy the side plank with reach because it is a challenging exercise for me to execute. Once again with the holidays in mind and time constraints, this exercise requires no equipment and not a lot of time. If you have been practicing your standard plank exercise and then progressed to the side plank that we incorporated into our exercise routines several weeks ago it is now time to kick things up a notch by adding the side plank with reach. If you cannot perform this exercise then you should begin your abdominal training by doing planks and side planks (no reach) regularly and then progress toward the goal of performing the side plank with reach after one month.

Here is how to execute the side plank with reach:

Step 1:Position your body into a right side plank position. (Lying on your side, lift your torso off the floor with your weight on your right arm, shoulder and elbow should be in the same line, elbow bent 90 degrees.)

Advanced option: Weight on hand and elbow straight, lifting your body off the floor. Your left foot should be lying on top of your right foot / ankle which is on the floor. Feet, hips, and shoulders should form a straight line.

Step 2: Keeping your abs pulled tight reach your left hand toward the ceiling.

Step 3: Slowly bring your left hand down tucking your hand under your body and twist your body forward until your torso is almost parallel to the floor.

Step 4: Slowly return to starting side plank position.

Repeat 5 -10 repetitions gradually increasing the number you are able to perform. Repeat on opposite side!

Spiritual Application: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13

December 20, 2010 at 3:16 am Leave a comment

Lateral Step-up: the Exercise that Puts an End to Inner Thigh Rubbing

Do you find that when you walk your inner thighs rub together causing your pants to ride up in the middle? Most of us would like to see a leaner and longer appearance of your legs when you look in the mirror. We would like to walk without our inner thighs rubbing together. If you are looking for a exercise to work on those inner thighs but wonder how in the world you’re going to be able to add another exercise to your routine when you are already so short on time. Well, most of us include step ups in our normal leg routine because it is a great exercise to target your butt and anterior thigh muscles in a short amount of time. But a way to train those muscles plus your inner thighs is by changing the way you step up. Don’t trade your front step-ups for these side step-ups but alternate them in your routine to add one more leg muscle to your exercise routine and work on leaning out your whole leg not just the front and back side.

The muscles targeted in a lateral step-up include quadriceps (front of upper legs), gluteus maximus, gluteus medius (butt), leg adductors (inner thigh)

Here’s how:

Step 1: Standing with your feet hip width apart on the right side of a bench or step that is about knee high. Place your hands on your hips (or hold dumbbells in your hands for added resistance).

Step 2: Step your left foot onto the center of the bench with the whole foot completely balanced.

Step 3: Push through your heel of the foot that is on the bench / step raising your body up.

Step 4: As your left knee straightens to raise your body, bring your right knee towards your chest (hip flexion).

Step 5: Lower your right foot back down towards the floor, followed by bringing your left foot off the bench back to the floor returning to the starting position.

Repeat 12 to 15 repetitions on left leg before changing to the right leg.

Spiritual Application:
You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the LORD will give you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the LORD will be with you. ~ 2 Chronicles 20:17

December 13, 2010 at 3:35 am Leave a comment

Sleep Apnea: A Silent Killer

“Obstructive Sleep Apnea(OSA) is a complex medical disease that has reached epidemic status in the USA. It was estimated in 2005 that between 12-18 Million Americans suffer from this disease. Forty percent are not obese, 36% with Type 2 Diabetes have undiagnosed OSA, 63% of these patients with OSA will progress to high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, cardiac arrhythmia, stroke and even sudden death, as seen in retired NFL star Reggie White whose death was thought to be due to complications of OSA.” Read more of Sleep Killer by Robert Gadlage M.D., F.A.C.S. in LiveLiving Christian Health and Wellness Magazine.

December 8, 2010 at 2:22 am Leave a comment

An Exercise that Can Be Done Even with a Busy Schedule

As we continue through the holidays time seems to be getting shorter by the day. We will spend extra time at our desk finishing up loose ends before the New Year, we will sit bent over wrapping Christmas presents for our family, and we will spend many hours in the kitchen cooking and baking for dinners with families and friends. What we will also do is skip workouts and squeeze every ounce of time we have in order to check off everything we can on our “to do” list.

One thing you may begin to notice is an increase in neck pain and shoulder stiffness and tightness because the posture in most of the above mentioned activities requires us to sit or be bent over for long amounts of time. With time being a limited commodity I like to continue with exercises that target multiple muscles in short brief amounts of time. The swimmer exercise targets your trapezius (upper shoulders), anterior and lateral deltoids (shoulders), erector spinae (lower back), glutes (butt), and hamstrings (back of your upper legs). And the best thing about this exercise is NO equipment needed.

Here is how:

Step 1: Lying face down on the floor, keep your legs and feet together, your arms should be extended overhead with palms down towards the ground.

Step 2: Lift your arms and legs a few inches off the ground. Keep your spine (back) in a neutral position.

Step 3: Staying lifted up bring your arms down by your side towards your hips. Rotate your palms to facing the ceiling as they come toward your glutes (butt). Try to bring your hands together to touch over your lower back.

Step 4: Hold this position for about 2-3 seconds then reverse your arms back to overhead position and rest arms and legs on the ground.

Repeat steps 1-4 for 15 to 20 repetitions.

Spiritual Application:

Isaiah 40: 29-32
29 He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the LORD
will renew their strength.

December 6, 2010 at 2:40 am Leave a comment

5 Foods that Keep You Awake


“Sleep deprivation can seriously impair your health, leaving your body more likely to develop stress-related disorders. These conditions may include weight gain, stomach ulcers, heart disease, constipation, and depression. A full night’s rest is a true gift from the Lord. It allows your body to heal, your immune system to grow stronger, and your ability to think clearly and perform optimally to increase. The proper amount of rest keeps you looking and feeling younger. So, you realize that sleep is important but what are the foods that contribute to insomnia?” Read more in the November / December 2010 issue of LiveLiving Christian Health and Wellness Magazine as Fay McLaughlin, RD reveals “5 Food that Keep You Awake.”

December 1, 2010 at 9:48 am Leave a comment

Target Your Legs, Butt, Back and Shoulders with One Exercise

Need an exercise that will hit multiple muscles with no equipment? During the holidays with time being short it can be beneficial to have an exercise that can work multiple muscles in minimal time. The Good Morning exercise will strengthen and tone your hamstings, butt (gluteus maximus), low back (erector spinae), shoulders (trapezius), and deltoids. Now that is an impact exercise!

Here’s how:

Step 1: Standing with your knees straight but unlocked, and your feet hip width apart.
Step 2: Raise your arms straight overhead. Palms of each hand should be facing each other and elbow locked out.
Step 3: Pick out an object to focus on in front of you (that is not moving) and slowly bend a your hips simultaneously lifting one leg behind you. With your leg lifted your leg, torso and arms should form a straight line. The leg on the ground should give you a figure “T”.
Step 4: Hold this position for 5-8 seconds and do 12-20 repetitions on each leg.

Key Points:

• Don’t let your arms drop out of a straight line.
• Keep your head up and eyes focused in front of you.
• Keep your standing knee soft and not locked out or fall into a bent knee.

*If you need more of a challenge do this exercise on the back / flat side of a Bosu ball!

November 29, 2010 at 11:34 am Leave a comment

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