Thursday, December 31, 2009
Time management is a misnomer. Everyone has the same 24 hours each day, and there is nothing you can do to create more time. But, you can get better at self-management. Learning how to say both "yes" and "no" with clarity and confidence is the critical step. By focusing on the top five items on your YES List, you will find it easier to pass on those time requests that conflict with your priorities. And remember - "NO" is a complete sentence."
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
@RedMountainSpa Red Mountain’s nationally awarded author and spiritual guide, Betina Lindsey is known for her Shaman Spirit Programs which explore personal writing, healing sound and the rediscovery of our personal and planetary soul.
1. How would you describe what you do at Red Mountain?
I offer spiritual guidance for those on the path of rediscovery of our personal and planetary soul. Whether it is healing sound, soul retrieval, or a life path reading, Shaman Spirit is for those who are looking for balance, harmony and peace in their lives. For example, “Writing Your Life” is a three day workshop adventure on how you became the person you are. We walk the spiral of experience where you create a timeline of your life so you can step into your destiny to bring healing and beauty to yourself, to your loved ones, and to the world. You might be walking your destiny, but are you aware of it?
2. Are your offerings popular with guests, and if so, why?
Yes, I so enjoy the guests who come to my sessions…they are spiritual explorers who want to bring balance to the body, to the soul and to the earth.
3. What is the most spiritual offering you provide?
In a trusting environment, I pass on what has been passed on to me from the ancient healing lineages, energies that support us to live protected and free of fear in our transcendent natures.
4. What do you think spa guests are looking for these days from services such as yours?
I feel they are looking for sustainable spiritual ecology that supports a sane and healthy human community.
5. What is the best part of your job?
Hands down! The resilient, gifted people I have met! You might ask what is a shaman? It is those who have the courage to find, heal and change what is not working. The people I meet are the earth keepers, the wisdom keepers and the creators that envision their selves and the world as healed. These are the shamans!
6. How does what you do complement Red Mountain and vice versa?
Shaman Spirit is a spiritual adventure where we not only climb rocks...we listen and talk to them...now that is complementary!
Tuesday, December 29, 2009
By Bud Howard
The Basics of Reiki:
At birth, we bring into this life, a supply of Ki/chi energy to fuel the body’s natural healing capabilities. That universal life energy supply is used up during the course of daily life, and needs to be replenished. When we are unable to replenish that energy for a prolonged period, we may become physically or emotionally ill. Tension/stress not released is stored in the fibers of the body’s organs, muscles, and connective tissue. Over time, this stored tension becomes a toxic form of energy, blocking the flow of this energy through the body, as well as the body’s ability to absorb it, eventually causing any of the preventable diseases encountered in the Western World.
A Reiki treatment provides the recipient with a concentrated, powerful infusion/booster shot of this life force/Reiki energy, and balances its flow and absorption in the body. The practitioner providing the therapy acts as a channel, or conduit for the concentrated flow of this energy from the practitioner’s hands into the recipient’s body. The recipient, then, applies that energy however, and where ever it is needed. No personal energy is drawn from the practitioner. On the contrary, the practitioner is simultaneously recharged and strengthened.
Training to be a Reiki Channel/practitioner is conducted in three steps/attunements. The first degree (Level 1) gives the practitioner the tools for self healing. The second degree (Level 2) provides the tools to support others in their healing efforts. The third degree (Level 3) provides the tools as well as the strength of practice to teach others.
The Origins of Reiki:
This natural healing system is described in 2,500-year old Sanskrit writings. That places its practice at roughly 600 years BCE, in the India-Tibet area. That would be within 100 years or so of when Lao Tsu is said to have written or coordinated the writing of the Tao Te Ching. No one knows how old the practice actually is.
In the 19th century, a Japanese monk or college professor (depending on who you read), Dr. Mikao Usui, rediscovered the practice as a result of his personal 20-year quest to learn the basis for the practice of healing with the hands. Dr. Mikao is said to have brought the practice back to Japan, where he proceeded to teach and practice the technique for the remainder of his life. This “Usui system” of energy healing has since been passed down by Reiki Masters, and is now practiced on a world-wide basis.
Dr. Usui coined the Japanese phrase, Reiki, which describes this healing technique. Reiki is actually two words, or characters in kanji. The character, Rei, describes the cosmic, universal aspect of the energy in question, and the character, ki, represents the fundamental life force that flows naturally through all things.
How Reiki Effects Your Body:
The body has its own natural healing capabilities that are fueled by this universal life/Reiki energy. Reiki therapy replenishes the recipient’s Reiki energy supply, while removing blockages to the energy flow, and balancing its absorption by each and every cell of the body. During this process, the recipient moves into a deep state of relaxation, softening and relaxing every muscle, connective tissue, and organ in the body. That softening removes the blockages of energy flow and makes all fibers and cells in the body more absorbent to the Reiki energy and nutrients ingested and breathed.
The body enlarges its capacity to breath. The heart rate drops. More effective oxygen transfer results in a greater quantity of oxygen being delivered to the brain, as well as every other organ in the body. The body’s metabolism works just like every other combustion system. The more oxygen is delivered the more effective the process. Thinking becomes clearer. Insights into particular questions or problems occur more readily. The natural chemicals produced by the body become those associated with resisting infection and disease, as opposed to those that support the fight/flight scenario, such as the stress hormone, adrenaline.
The Benefits and/or Drawbacks of Reiki:
A normal Reiki treatment takes about an hour. In the face of a stressful event or situation, though, a level 1 practitioner can reduce the body’s production of the stress hormone, adrenaline, in just a few minutes, by placing the hands over the kidneys – that’s very near the adrenal gland that produces that hormone when conditions become stressful.
A level 1 practitioner, over time, becomes very aware of events/sensations occurring in their own body, and can, therefore, more quickly spot internal tension as it begins to occur in the face of a stressful situation. When that awareness occurs, releasing the tension is as easy and quick as a deep sigh with the hands placed over the heart, the sternum, or the kidneys.
Practitioners giving treatment experience the same rejuvenating recharge as is experienced by the recipient often leaving the treatment with the same feelings of peace and well-being.
Self healing is a crucial first step to becoming a channel for Reiki energy. Only when you have taken responsibility for your own health and well-being can you position yourself to assist others in their own healing processes. Self treatment reduces stress, relaxes you, and strengthens your power to resist illness. At a higher level, it also brings harmony and well-being into your life.
How Reiki Can Help You Manage Your Stress Level:
A Reiki self treatment early in the day enables you to begin your day with no tension stored in the body. At the end of the day, a quick self treatment enables you to spot tension stored in the body from the events of the day. You can then quickly release that tension. In most cases this insures a restful, continuous, night’s sleep.
During the day, as events occur, the self awareness a Reiki practice provides will enable you to spot tension as it begins – often times even before it begins - to build in the body. Releasing becomes an automatic reaction rather than something that takes time, focus, and a private spot.
Barring the above, a Reiki treatment provided by a practitioner releases all the tension/emotions/memories stored in the body, replenishes and balances the healing energy, and promotes clearer, more insightful thinking, reduces the heart rate, and strengthens the immune system.
Monday, December 28, 2009
By Cindy Clemens
Now that the new year is fully here, and you've had some time to recover from the holidays, I bet you have started to think about something you'd like to modify, eliminate or adjust in your life. Could be about diet, exercise, a job situation, a relationship or your home environment. There is definitely something in the air this time of year that calls for change. While it may be fairly easy to identify what you would like to change, the actual process of change may not be as clear for you. To assist you in your life update endeavors, I offer the following ideas that I have learned about the change process.
First, don't sabotage the process by taking too big of steps. Set very realistic goals and see how good positive momentum feels. A common goal this time of year is to start a new exercise program. Pick a target that you can comfortably reach the first week. Underpromise, and then surprise yourself by over performing. If your realistic goal is to walk twice a week, and you find you can do it three times, you will be exceeding your expectations. This sets up a much better mindset than setting an unrealistic goal of four times a week, and being disappointed with three walks. Remember, change is a process, not an event. Positive forward motion is what you are looking for.
Second, understand the dynamics of the change process. In my experience and my work with coaching clients, I find life changes that are lasting and meaningful tend to follow a four-step process, namely: noticing what is not working and what needs to be tweaked; gathering information, ideas, and feelings around this aspect of life; setting a clear direction and actions steps that will get you what you would like to have more, or less, of in your life; and revisiting this area of your life often to see how things are going and to make adjustments. Much like a young plant needs to be tended and nurtured, so do your goals and intentions need your conscious energy, focus, and attention on a consistent basis.
Third, create a theme that will guide you all year long. It might be The Year of Healthier Food Choices, or the Year of Moving My Body, or The Year of Discovering A new Career Path that Aligns with My Passions. You can even create a vision board of your theme, and throughout the year add the positive steps you take toward that theme. At the end of the year you will be able to see, and celebrate, what you have accomplished.
Fourth and finally, develop a change support system. Don't try to go it alone. Find someone else looking to make a similar change who can become your change buddy. Share your theme and progress, and ask your buddy to check in with you. By creating camaraderie and accountability, you will get where you want to go faster and with a lot more fun.
Sunday, December 27, 2009
Saturday, December 26, 2009
Friday, December 25, 2009
By Myrna Beardshear
Director of Spa, Health & Fitness
Reactions to stress can vary enormously, and some of these reactions are not healthy. The most frequent undesirable reaction is anxiety. The degree of anxiety is much more a function of the individual than of the degree of stress. This means that some people cope with the stress of daily living better than others, and the degree of anxiety can show how well a person is coping.
People are anxious about the current economy and how it may affect them, terrorism and war weigh on the minds of others and some have seemingly lost their way on the paths they have chosen. The interesting thing about anxiety is that it is often created from our thoughts about the future.
We have guests who are coming to Red Mountain to enjoy our astonishing scenery and world-famous outdoor program and are discovering paths towards a deeper consciousness and ways to manage stress and regain direction in their lives. Through Yoga, Tai Chi, Meditation and some of these being taken out onto the rocks in the magnificent Snow Canyon Park, guests are finding physical and emotional relief.
Our Self Discovery Services inspire and motivate guests in new ways so that they leave Red Mountain with renewed energy and focus in their life. Life Coaching, Energy Therapy, Native American Card reading are some of the ways that guests have discovered their paths.
Stress aggravates many conditions including allergies, arthritis, atherosclerosis, asthma, cancer, colitis, diabetes, emphysema, gastritis, hypertension, low back pain, neurosis, neuromuscular syndromes, speech problems, and ulcers. The toxins released due to these ailments and the chemicals we take to treat them harm the body in many more ways.
Red Mountain Spa offers the Detoxification and Renewal program, an 8-day/7-night stay which has helped hundreds of people to rid their body of these toxins through a healthy nutrition approach, removing the foods that cause inflammation and allergic reaction. This package includes spa therapies, yoga workshops, and nutrition consultations along with our daily hiking, three nutritious and delicious meals and fitness classes, which allow the guest to customize their detoxification experience.
Thursday, December 24, 2009
Director of Spa, Health & Fitness
Our feet need as much love as the rest of our body. Many times we forget that we also need to pamper them, mainly if we've had a hard day at work.
To nurture your feet, combine an even amount of honey and sugar. Apply the mixture to your feet and soak your feet in warm water. The scrub is helpful to alleviate callus formation and also acts as a powerful antibacterial agent. Results will be smooth, healthy and clean sweet feet.
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
What we observe is that all too often people are hyper critical of themselves. While a tremendous marketing success, the “just do it” philosophy can generate a sense of failure for those struggling with fitness. Often despondent clients will ask rhetorically, “why can’t I just do it?”
While some people thrive on big challenges, most wellness counselors appreciate the wisdom of starting with small, realistic lifestyle changes. Having incremental success creates greater confidence and a sense of accomplishment. True, the ultimate long range fitness goals may require changing one’s all thinking and behavior around food and exercise, but the process still begins with small steps.
Ironically, the same lack of objectivity also prevents us from our seeing our fitness foibles. We can be simultaneously – too hard and too easy on ourselves. This is where a food and activity log comes in. Hardly anyone enjoys daily tracking, but it is an essential tool for recognizing downfalls. This log should be kept in real time – no one is good at recalling details at the end of the day. Furthermore, it should also include a brief personal entry regarding state of mind and emotions that day. It is not just a matter of accounting – the process is one of self-awareness and enlightenment. It forces us to be honest with ourselves in many ways.
While it is true that every action begins as a thought, we must not get stuck in thought. Action is required for change. Be a good parent to yourself. Create an environment of loving, balanced and healthy discipline and health benefits will follow.
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
By Myrna Beardshear
Director of Spa, Health & Fitness
Located in St. Malo, on the Brittany coast of France, Phytomer Laboratories specializes in the research and development of marine products. In 1971, Jean Gedouin founded Phytomer Laboratories. While striving to achieve his goal of providing salons, day spas and resorts with the healing benefits of the sea, he recognized lyophilization as the most superior method of processing. Phytomer became the first to successfully apply this freeze-drying method to the production of a cosmetic line.
Mr. Gedouin was not satisfied to just create products – his goals were much higher. He cultivated a philosophy based on treating the underlying causes of skin disorders, not merely the symptoms. This philosophy resulted in the development of treatments specific to each individuals needs, and the delicate balance between dietetics and cosmetics.
Today Phytomer is recognized by professionals all over the world as an undisputed leader of marine-based beauty therapy. This reputation arose from Phytomer emphasis on education, and the development of the highest quality products possible.
Phytomer, meaning literally “Plant of the Sea,” is located on the western coast of France. It was the therapeutic powers of the ocean, which brought way to the Phytomer concept and philosophy of “Beauty through Health.” The Phytomer Method encompasses a carefully designed treatment program to individualize the needs of each person through the use of skin care, body care, thalassotherapy, solar products, dietetics and so on. Through this avenue, Phytomer is available to offer balance and harmony to the body, which leads way to a new sense of well-being.
Currently, Phytomer products are available in over 70 countries worldwide. As a leader in the esthetics field for more than twenty years, Phytomer has adopted strict standards for product quality and effectiveness. Through unique and patented ingredients as well as use of the most proficient preservation methods, Phytomer is available to achieve remarkable results with each product creation.
Monday, December 21, 2009
Many experts suspect that the fluid retention associated with the menstrual cycle is either directly or indirectly responsible for a great deal of symptoms. This is good news to some extent, because there are several lifestyle and dietary habits that may help modulate fluid retention.
The primary goal would be to develop overall healthy habits to achieve a good fluid balance. The basic recommendations would include: regular exercise, drink plenty of water, avoid sugar, salt and too much caffeine. Also, for most people a boost in the quantity of fresh fruits and vegetables (5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables daily) will improve digestive regularity, provide powerful nutrients and help regulate fluid balance.
Furthermore, there are several foods that have a significant diuretic effect. By including these foods during the time of the worst symptoms, some relief may be provided: celery (seed and plant), parsley, dandelion greens, asparagus, artichoke, melon (all kinds), watercress, and to a lesser degree: cucumbers and strawberries.
Caffeine is also a powerful diuretic, but should be used with caution during menstrual distress because too much caffeine may increase stress levels and contribute to irritability. Many teas have a diuretic effect, such as: licorice, astragulus and teas especially formulate as PMS supportive. These are generally safe, but use in moderation (2-3 cups per day) because too much diuretic may back-fire and cause a craving for salty foods.
A modest increase in protein consumption also serves as a mild diuretic, and when combined with carbohydrates, may have the added benefit of providing sustained hunger satisfaction and energy.
One of the best ways to calm carbohydrate cravings is to consume the right amount of good, whole grain, complex carbohydrates. While the high protein trend has moderated, many people still shy away from eating adequate complex carbohydrates and then find themselves craving sugar.
Find and use a reliable tool for estimating an appropriate amount of wholesome carbohydrate foods like MyPyramid.gov. While you may not consume that amount of carbohydrate foods on a regular basis, you can use the amount as a guide during the difficult time of the month to provide some “insurance” against craving sugars and other simple carbohydrates.
There are many wonderful complex carbohydrates that are naturally sweet, packed with beneficial nutrients, high in fiber and provide sustained blood sugar energy: sweet potatoes, brown rice, oats, winter squashes, quinoa and all types of legumes.
Essential fatty acids have shown positive impact on the balance of blood sugar and there is some evidence that they may help fight depression. Essential fatty acids can be taken in supplements, but are found in many wonderful foods, such as: nuts, seeds, flax seeds and fatty fish.
Having an appropriate amount of healthy fats daily will also keep your hunger satisfied, aid in regularity and keep you from craving “bad fats.”
Sample Meal Plan for PMS
Breakfast: 1 cup oatmeal, 1 cup of strawberries, 1 hard boiled egg, Licorice tea
Snack: Cucumber & watercress sandwich on 2 slices whole grain bread with light mayonnaise, 12 cashews
Lunch: Big salad: mix 1 cup of dandelion greens with your regular greens, tomatoes, celery, any other veggies, 2-3 ounces of lean protein, ½ cup of any type of bean (garbanzo, kidney, pinto), 2 tablespoons of sunflower seeds and 2 Tablespoons of a light salad dressing.
Snack: Chocolate 2 whole grain crackers with ½ Tablespoon almond butter & a protein shake (1-2 scoop of protein powder and 8 oz of skim or soy milk)
Dinner: 3-4 oz. Salmon, ½ cup sweet potato, 1 cup green beans, 1 cup broccoli (optional- cook up the rest of the dandelion greens- 1 cup cooked)
After dinner treat: ½ cup sorbet, 3-4 graham crackers, 1 cup fresh fruit
While this type of menu will not cure all your symptoms, it may help to minimize the discomfort. The mix of good, complex carbohydrates, substantial protein, high fiber, high nutrition, essential fatty acids and diuretic foods should help ease symptoms.
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Friday, December 18, 2009
It is nearly impossible to “help” close friends and family members with their health and fitness issues. The best way to help loved ones is 1.) Be a positive power of example and 2.) Detach with love from their bad habits (and really mean it). In other words, you can’t change them. What you can do is take care of your own health and express your love and concern. In other words, if your spouse is overweight with subsequent health problems, tell them about your desire to have a long and happy, active life with them well into the future. Then, put on your exercise clothes and go out and take care of yourself!
If you notice attempts at positive changes, you might want to reinforce the changes without seeming condescending. If you usually go for a long run, and your spouse has finally started going for walks, be careful not to overshadow their accomplishment. Pay attention and pick up on cues for how you can support them.
In any case, while taking care of yourself you can ask for their support. This may involve certain considerations and adjustments to support your health choices. For example, if you are working hard at weight management, you may ask that your loved ones support your efforts by not bringing junk food into the house. Or you may need to ask for understanding when you take time away from the family to do your exercise. In being transparent about the real effort that is required to make difficult changes you are showing your loved ones how they might make changes as well.
Thursday, December 17, 2009
By Kim Watters
Red Mountain is proud to introduce a TRXTM class, the TRX which stands for Total-body Resistance Exercise.
TRX Suspension Trainer allows you to use your body weight to perform hundreds of exercise progressions for every body part and plane of motion. The class is facilitated outside in our scenic southwest environment. The TRX is easily utilized outside, by connecting it to a tree branch, tall fence, or playground equipment. The exercises performed using the TRX cause the total body to stabilize so the specific exercise can be completed. This program is an efficient way to work the total body and is a challenging workout for anybody.
The goal of this type of class is to increase balance and strength which helps us maintain the quality of life as we age. For example, falling is a common fear that we can overcome through specific training on the TRX.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Director of Spa, Health & Fitness
Cucumber is helpful for soothing irritated, red, swollen eyes. To prepare, dice a cucumber and place the chunks in a food processor with a tablespoon of mineral water. Turn on the processor just long enough to mash the cucumber into a water paste. Spoon the mixture into cheesecloth or gauze squares, wrapping each square into individual eye-pads. Stack the eye-pads in a sealed plastic container and refrigerate to have on hand for a soothing, relaxing eye treat.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
By Kim Watters
Here at Red Mountain we are always looking for the next adventure, and an outdoor adventure is even better. So we were pumped when we discovered Nordic Walking, also known as ski walking. This exciting activity combines the two methods of traditional fitness walking and cross country skiing, including the use of modified ski poles.
Nordic Walking was first used as a summer training method to keep cross-country skiers in tip top shape through the snow-less days of summer. Later a group of professionals consisting of researchers in sports medicine, and other fitness professionals developed it into a fitness exercise. Nordic Walking was first launched in Finland in 1997. It has rapidly increased in popularity and today Nordic Walking is well-known fitness sports.
According to the International Nordic Walking Association there are many benefits to Nordic walking, here are a few that stand out when compared to traditional fitness walking:
- Heart rate is 5-17 beats per minute higher (for example in normal walking heart rate is 130 beats/minute and in Nordic Walking 147 beats per minute i.e. increase is 13%)
- Energy consumption increases when using poles by an average of 20% compared with ordinary walking without poles
- Up to a 46% increase in energy consumption (Cooper Institute research, Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sports 2002 publication)
- Releases pain and muscle tension in the neck/shoulder region
- The lateral mobility of the neck and spine increases significantly
- The muscles most actively involved are the forearm extensor and flexor muscles, the rear part of the shoulder muscles, the large pectoral muscles and the broad back muscles
- Does not aggravate joints and knees
- Reduces the load on knees and other joints
- Consumes approximately 400 calories per hour (compared with 280 calories per hour for normal walking)
- Poles are a safety factor on slippery surfaces
Red Mountain invites you to Nordic Walk with us among the beautiful red rocks of Snow Canyon State Park. Our Fitness staff is ready and can help you reap the benefits of Nordic Walking as we lead you into our next new adventure.
By Cindy Clemens
A few days ago I was looking through some old photographs and I saw a picture of myself in a – gasp – bathing suit from about ten years ago. I remember looking at that picture shortly after it was taken, focusing on the flaws in my body. The not-so-flat stomach, a waist that was not very svelte, and a small piece of back fat were all that I could see or think about at that time.
But now, looking at that same photograph ten years later, I was stunned by how good my body did look. I did not have my current face wrinkles, arm flappers, or general lowering of everything. How I would love to have that body now. It made me seriously ponder why ten years ago I had been so ready to let the perceived flaws prevent me from enjoying my beautiful, strong, healthy body.
Of course this led me to wonder how much I was still doing this. Was I enjoying my body right now? Because I am sure that in ten years I would be very happy to have this body. And a further question was how much I was able to allow my husband to enjoy my body right now. He honestly did seem to enjoy looking at and touching my body, but I often discounted his compliments with my negative thoughts about how my body appeared to me.
Certainly my body has changed over the years. So has my husband's, and since we have been together for over 30 years, I have witnessed his changes. Yet I still love the feel, the warmth and the sensuality of his body. Perhaps I should assume he feels the same about me and move on with fully loving, caring for and pampering my body just as it is.
Monday, December 14, 2009
By Dr. Brad Crump
Health Services Manager
Contrary to most thinking, small changes we make in our lifestyle choices such as nutrition and exercise make significant improvements in our overall health and wellness. Experience shows that individuals who gravitate to an "all or nothing" attitude tend to experience the most failure and tend to be the most discouraged. This usually leads to a return of unhealthy habits. Building a solid foundation through small progressive and consistent steps usually leads to more realistic and long term changes. Enjoy the journey!
Red Mountain Resort & Spa focuses on personal evaluations so that specific and individualized action plans can be put into place. We are then able to design a nutrition program or an exercise program that is tailor made for that individual. Red Mountain also offers a wide variety of programs and services that help each individual identify areas of need as well as find activities that they are passionate about. This tends to increase their sense of purpose, motivates them and provides them a network of professionals to help encourage and follow up with their progress.
The most important steps for weight loss and healthy eating habits really revolve around understanding personal needs. It is also important to help an individual determine what their specific goals are and to establish a time frame that is realistic to achieving those goals. In addition, scheduling those activities becomes important. Just as we schedule work related activities, we need to schedule exercise time and eating times and be consistent and true to those “appointments.”
To become a habit, an activity must be performed consistently over a period of time. The reason most people stop exercising or eating right is that they do not see results, the find it too challenging (feels like too much work), they feel they do not have the time or they lack family or social support.
Here are some ways to take small steps and implement the spa experience at home:
- Schedule exercise and eating times. Make sure that these times are realistic and obtainable. Rome was not built in day. Enjoy the small changes and the experience of change.
- Involve the family. Find activities that the family can do together and that everyone enjoys. Join a walking group or get friends together a few times a week for group exercise. There tends to be strength in numbers as well as accountability and support.
- Think positive. The surest way to fail is negative “self talk.” Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you are probably right. The universe tends to give us what we ask for.
- Choose a healthy recipe to prepare each week. This will get you into a more healthy way of eating and will help see how healthy eating can be delicious as well.
There are a number of books and resources available. Here are a few that can be of great benefit:
- “Organizing from the inside out” by Julie Morgenstern
- “Life is a do over” by Cindy Clemens
- “Grocery shopping made easy” by Chris Mohr and Kara Mohr (DVD)
- “Ultra prevention” and “The ultra simple diet” by Mark Hyman
- The Red Mountain Spa cookbook
Friday, December 11, 2009
By Kim Watters
It can be a challenge to keep the kids entertained past the first few days of a school break. It seems that once the newness of sleeping in and playing videogames has worn off, parents feel compelled to entertain them or find something new for them to do. Instead of joining them on the couch with a bag of chips, try these fun and fit activities for both you and the kids,
Hula Hoops are Hot, hot, hot again
Moms, the new weighted sports hoops ($12-$20) will shape your waist, hips, thighs and arms in no time, and the kids will have a great time trying to perfect these new moves and tricks with their own hula hoops. There are DVD's, instructional books you can purchase or just search "Hula Hoop exercises" online and get some great tips for free. Make sure you get the right size hoop; generally the hoop should reach between your waist and chest when held in front of your legs and tipped on its side.
Jumping rope like the Joes at the gym
Jumping rope has always been a great cardiovascular workout in the gym; you can plan on burning up to 135 calories in just 10 minutes. Don't get bored, spice it up with some tricks and games from the school yard. Just ask your kids, they'll love to show you how it is done on their playground.
Too cold outside? Glide inside instead.
Gliding disks add intensity and resistance to your workout and are made for use on carpet. But let's face it, they are slippery and fun to play with, too. There are a few different styles of disks that you can choose to buy, or you can just use paper plates with a wax coating. Again, there are many free exercises to choose from on line as well as DVD's and instructional books to purchase. However, just playing tag, racing, dancing or playing "Simon Says" with them will give you an excellent workout and you can't find a much cheaper piece of exercise equipment than a paper plate.
Playing knocks boredom out of your winter break; it promotes your health and maintains your sanity. Get ready, get set, get fit.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Bison and grain fed beef have a lower fat content so lowering the temperature by 25 degrees will slow the cooking process. This allows the internal temperature to reach the desired doneness without over cooking the exterior.
Cooking times will vary in accordance to the cut on meat; I recommend a meat thermometer to check doneness.
Never press any meat, burger, steak or chicken; this will squeeze out the juices producing a dryer product. When cooking roasts you should let them rest because while they are cooking the juices are forced towards the middle of the meat. Letting it rest allows those juices to rejuvenate through the meat.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
By Mryna Beardshear
Director of Spa, Health & Fitness
- A steady daily amount of exercise in the morning or afternoon deepens sleep.
- Insulate your room against sound and light.
- Keep your room temperature moderate. Excessively warm or cold temperatures can disturb sleep.
- Both hunger and excessive fullness can disturb sleep. A light snack at bedtime may help you sleep. Tryptophan, found in warm milk or bananas, assist somnolence.
- I keep a journal next to my bed. Before going to sleep at night, I write in my journal all the things I have on my mind. It might be a conflict, a job left undone or a concern for health or business. After writing everything negative down, I take time to write three things that happened in my day about which I feel good – my daily blessings. Most times they are very ordinary things that I have may have missed thinking about if I wasn’t taking this special time to end my day. In closing my journal I do so consciously, symbolically closing my day, with the thought of the last blessing written still on my mind. My journal is placed in a drawer where I cannot be tempted to re-open it.
- I then close my eyes, breathe deeply and contemplating blessings. I make my commitment to let go of all my concerns and give thanks for the blessings of the day. At this stage I am ready to focus my thoughts inward using visualization and breathing to relax and go to my own very special place before falling asleep.
Monday, December 7, 2009
Why do you think life coaching is growing in popularity?
As a profession, life coaching is gaining popularity because so many people are tired of being stressed, strained and exhausted from their out of control lives. They know there is a better way to live, but they need a guide to help them set priorities, say no to the energy drains in their lives, and overcome the fears and doubts that keep them stuck. A life coach is that guide. Since so many guests visit spas to get a break from their overwhelming lives, it makes sense they would enjoy connecting with a life coach to learn ways to reduce the overwhelm when they return home.
What are people looking for when you start working with them?
Guests have usually heard the term "life coach" but most are not sure what it means. So their first interest is to find out more about what a life coach does. That is why Red Mountain provides the guests with a chance to have Lunch with a Professional or attend the Fire Ceremony to ask questions and find out more. Many of them do decide to attend the life strategy workshops or have a private session. They are looking for concrete tools to take back home to make more room for themselves and a plan for implementing their heartfelt dreams and goals. I am able to really listen to them, provide feedback and probing questions and motivate them to take action – that’s what they want to happen.
Friday, December 4, 2009
Sit with your back about 4 inches away from your chair. Cross your arms over your chest and sit up straight. Tighten your abdominal muscles and press the middle of your spine in to the back of the chair. Your shoulders should curl towards your hip bones. Hold for 2-3 seconds, and then return to sitting up straight. (8-12 repetitions)
Thursday, December 3, 2009
By Dr. Brad Crump
Health Services Manager
Once again, we find ourselves asking “Where did the year go? What happened to all of the goals I set, the ones I said would transform my life once and for all?”
When you look in the mirror, what do you see? Not just what is reflected in the mirror, but beneath the surface? Like an iceberg, only a third of that iceberg is seen above water. In addition, all icebergs are different in shape and size. Now is the time to see that we are uniquely different and, therefore, need a more unique approach.
Let’s reflect on one of the most common goals people set. If you are like the majority of Americans, one of those unachieved goals was changing your diet and losing weight. Given the fact that you had found success with earlier popular diets, along with the expected return of the lost weight, you felt it wise to do it again. Unfortunately, you may have been through this scenario numerous times with the accompanying feelings of guilt and despair, throwing your arms up in the air and proclaiming, “What’s the use?”
This reminds me of the popular definition of insanity, which is “doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.” Maybe it is time to start adopting the old counsel “If it sounds too good to be true….”
Let’s make a goal to return back to the healthful dietary habits that are proven and sound and, unlike many “flash in the pan” programs, actually lead to long lasting weight loss and health. Let’s revisit some healthy nutrition principles that if followed, will lead to healthy weight loss.
- Jumpstart your day with a nutritious breakfast. One should never skip this meal.
- Always have protein and good fats with all your meals.
- Increase fiber intake to 30 to 50 grams daily.
- Eat detoxifying foods like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and brussel sprouts.
- Eat small meals and snacks throughout the day.
- Go “wild” with salmon.
- Eat more nuts, seeds and legumes.
- Avoid artificial sweeteners.
- Make sure that you eat enough calories to meet your Resting Metabolic Rate.
- Refrain from eating at least two hours before going to bed.
- Eat a colorful diversity of low-glycemic fruits and vegetables.
- Minimize or eliminate refined and processed flours and sugars.
Reflecting back on our successes as well as failures helps us to identify those approaches that will most benefit us. Start looking beneath the surface and you will find answers leading to health and happiness.
Here’s looking at you kid!
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
- Mix a puffed cereal with your favorite granola – ¼ cup of average low fat granola has 150-250 calories; 1 cup of puffed cereal is 50-90 calories. Since ¼ cup of granola is never enough, have the granola, but mix with some puffed cereal for volume. Save 100-140 calories versus having a ½ cup of granola.
- Choose vegetables that fulfill the need for starchy foods instead of instead of having rice, potato or pasta. For example: Turnip ½ cup cubes = 17 calories, Turnip mashed, 1 cup = 51 calories, Spaghetti squash 19 calories per ½ cup; Butternut squash = ½ cup = 40 calories. One half cup of mashed potato without any milk, butter or margarine has 119 calories and a half cup of brown rice has 109 calories.
- Can’t resist blue cheese dressing? Add a one inch cube of blue cheese to one 8 oz. package of silken tofu, mix with a little garlic salt, dry mustard, add vinegar to taste, then refrigerate for 2 hours to allow flavors to blend. Makes 4 – 2 oz servings (that’s A LOT of blue cheese dressing) and has only 50 calories whereas a mere one tablespoon of standard blue cheese dressing has 73 calories.
- Want a decadent dessert? Mix 1 T peanut butter with 1 T milk, then blend into 1 cup low fat non-dairy topping – It will satisfy your craving for a peanut butter cup when you put a dollop on top of low fat chocolate pudding.
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Red Mountain will give $1 to Best Friends Animal Society's "Puppies Aren't Products" campaign for every new newsletter sign-up in December.
Help us support this worthwhile campaign. "Adopt, Don't Shop"
Visit http://www.redmountainspa.com/animal_sanctuary.php for more information.
About Best Friends Animal Society
The Best Friends Animal Society at Angel Canyon, at the heart of the Golden Circle of national parks in southern Utah, is home on any given day to about 2,000 dogs, cats, and other animals, who come from shelters and rescue groups around the country for special care they can only receive at Best Friends. Best Friends Animal Society is guided by a simple philosophy: kindness to animals builds a better world for all of us.
Best Friends had its origin in the late 1970s with a group of friends who worked with their local humane societies to care for homeless pets with special needs. In the mid-1980s, they started a sanctuary in Kanab that soon led to the founding of Best Friends Animal Society, a nationwide organization promoting rescue, adoption, spay/neuter and education programs.
Yield: About 16 oz Servings: 4 Serving Size: 4 oz
12.5 oz Soft Tofu
3 oz Dark Chocolate
1/3 Cup Cocoa Powder
1/4 Cup Boiling Water
1 T Orange Zest
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
2/3 Cup Powdered Sugar
1. Melt Dark Chocolate with Boiling Water.
2. Place all ingredients in food processor and puree until smooth.
3. Top with Fructose Candied Orange Zest.
Monday, November 30, 2009
Lie on the floor with a small pillow under your head. Your knees should be slightly bent. Put one hand on your stomach and one hand on your chest. Draw deep breaths into your abdomen and feel it rise. Your chest should hardly move at all. Belly-breathe without your chest moving and exhale through your nose.
Stand with your knees slightly bent but not locked. Many tense people tend to lock their knees, which immobilizes the whole body. Take a position with your feet about eight inches apart and bend your knees so that the weight of your body is in balance between the heels and the balls of your feet. The rest of your body should be in a straight line with your arms hanging loosely at your side. Let your belly hang out. Don’t force it out but do not hold it in either. Breathe from your belly (exercise 1). Your back should be straight but not rigid, and your pelvis should be relaxed. Hold this position for two minutes. While waiting in line or standing at a party, try this stance. Try to keep it whenever you have to stand for any length of time.
No matter where you are – at your desk, in a meeting, at home, you can do this exercise unobtrusively. Wiggle your toes, giving special attention to your big toes for one minutes. Then circle your feet by rotating them on your ankles. Next tighten your buttocks, count to five, and relax. Inhale deeply into your abdomen and then exhale.
Friday, November 27, 2009
By Cindy Clemens
A Red Mountain Resort & Spa adventure is a great way to honor your life. First, it allows you to slowdown and get off the 24/7 grind with amazing sunrise hikes, fitness classes and spa treatments. Of course you are free to stay connected while at Red Mountain, but why not give yourself the treat of unplugging and relaxing for a few days. Lounge in the numerous hammocks on the grounds, enjoy the relaxation room at Sagestone Spa, walk the spiral labyrinth or soak in the soothing waters of the outdoor or indoor pool.
Second, you will be inspired to examine your life path, set new health and fitness goals and clear the blocks that have kept you stuck in life. Red Mountain offers many professionals with whom you can consult, including a life coach, nutritionist, energy healer and many others. And, it is easy to meet kindred spirits – other guests who are also taking a look at their lives and making some course corrections for the better.
Third, you will be nourished and replenished by doing what you want to do — what makes you smile and gets you excited. While at Red Mountain you can even try something new, such as rock climbing, kayaking, pottery school or even tai chi out on rocks. Even if you come to Red Mountain with other people, you will still get lots of ME time because you can go separate ways and meet up at dinner to compare your days.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
By Myrna Beardshear
Director of Spa, Health & Fitness
It seems that, no matter how hard I try, I cook too much of everything for Thanksgiving dinner. I have found some wonderful ways to indulge myself while not over-indulging over the holiday. I do this by putting aside some of the prepared foods before preparing them for the dinner table.
Pumpkin is my favorite skin treat. It is an excellent treatment for all skin types, especially environmentally damaged or sensitive skin. Rich in Vitamin A (skin healing), C (anti-oxidant) and Zinc, the pumpkin soothes, moisturizes and acts as a carrier, assisting the other mask ingredients to absorb deeper into the skin and intensifying the results.
Pumpkin puree has enzymes and antioxidants that offer results similar to gentle alpha-hydroxy action; It removes dead dull cells, while its beta-carotene-rich antioxidants nourish your skin. This will moisturize and nourish your skin, leaving it smooth and glowing.
Pumpkin Body Mask
1/2 cup cooked or canned pumpkin puree
1/2 cup solids from a can of coconut milk (Coconut solids are a natural moisturizer)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (ground cinnamon is gently warming, stimulating and antibacterial)
- Making sure they are at room temperature, mix ingredients in a bowl.
- Apply generously to clean skin, massaging gently to work well into the skin. (I like to do this while standing on a towel in the bathtub and then I sit on the towel while waiting for the mask to work).
- Allow the mask to remain on for about 10 minutes, a good time to do some breathing and meditation to relax you after all those hours in the kitchen.
- Rinse with warm water and pat dry.
Pumpkin Pie Face Mask
2 teaspoons cooked or canned pumpkin, pureed
1/2 teaspoon honey (humectant, regenerative)
1/4 teaspoon milk, or soymilk (alpha hydroxyl acid, enzymes digest skin cells)
For Dry Skin
1/4 teaspoon heavy whipping cream (moisturizing; alpha hydroxy acid)
For Oily Skin
1/4 teaspoon cranberry juice (high in antioxidants critically important to the utilization of essential fatty acids to maintain balanced, nourished skin)
- Combine the ingredients for your facemask.
- Mix gently and apply to your face avoiding the eye area.
- Relax for 10-15 minutes while your Thanksgiving mask gently exfoliates, nourishes and conditions your face.
- Rinse with warm water and apply the appropriate moisturizer for your skin type
and allow the mixture to penetrate for 15 minutes. Rinse with tepid water.
Calming Cranberry and Orange Herbal Bath
To relax and unwind this season, save half a cup of those wonderful fresh cranberries you bought in an overly energetic moment to make fresh cranberry sauce. Tie the cranberries in some clean muslin and crush them slightly before adding them to hot bath water. Allow bath water to cool for about 10 minutes and add 8-10 drops of essential oil of orange. Test that water is not to warm and soak for about 20 minutes.
Soothing Eggnog Soak
If you buy eggnog over the season, save some of it to try yourself to a luxurious bath.
For super hydrated skin this winter, add 4 cups of eggnog and 8-10 drops of ylang ylang essential oil to warm bath water. Relax in the tub for 20 minutes. You’ll enjoy the luxury of the wonderful milk bath and your skin will feel smooth and soft.
Resources for pumpkin recipes:
Cait Johnson, author of Witch in the Kitchen (Inner Traditions, 2001).
Lipman World, newsletter, Issue 2: Volume 1 2004, www.lipman world.com
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Therefore, it is not surprising that we have imbued food situations with complex levels of meaning. The emotional associations with food begin before we know words. We pick up on the emotional energy of the feeding experience. Parents pass down their attitudes about food to their children, whether consciously or unconsciously.
The issue, then, is how many of these subconscious attitudes and beliefs are driving our food choices and are the consequences of these food choices causing problems? If your health is good, including an appropriate body weight and body composition, healthy cholesterol levels, blood pressure and blood sugar, then your food intake is probably in balance.
However, if you have been trying to improve your nutrition choices and you keep “failing” due to deep, unconscious feelings about food, then you may want to examine some of your food choices and eating “triggers”.
In our culture, one of the most common examples of a situation triggering eating behavior is going to the movies and eating popcorn. The association is strengthened by the wonderful aroma of popcorn, and the fact that it is a high glycemic, high fat food which tends to encourage overeating. But, unless you go to the movies (and eat tons of movie popcorn) several times a week, it is probably not the main cause of dietary imbalance.
There are lots of other social situations that tend to trigger desire to eat certain foods: kick-back nights and pizza, carnivals and cotton candy, street fairs and kettle corn. But, the real issue is usually the more personally associations because these may happen daily and many times throughout the day. If your daily food choices are driven by emotional triggers, it could cause serious nutritional problems.
The most common emotional triggers for consuming certain foods are stress, anxiety, nervousness, happiness, depression, anger, fear and boredom. We may have a specific food “fix” or it may be a taste, such as sweet, salty, crunchy, fatty or any combination of these.
One of the best defenses against emotional eating is eating well. If you are well nourished and not overly hungry or feeling deprived, you will be less susceptible to temptation. A good dietitian can help you set up a personalized, healthy eating plan. Depending on the severity of the eating issues, other ways to deal with emotional eating may be nutrition counseling, psychological counseling or group support such as Overeaters Anonymous.
Whether one chooses outside support or attempts to change their habits with self awareness, it is essential that the approach be positive and loving. At the deepest level, we associate food with love. Therefore, we can’t force ourselves to change using rigid ideas and harsh discipline. We must fill the emotional void with positive feelings.
Old, destructive eating habits can be replaced with an understanding that eating well is a sacred act of self care and love. We can make new associations by viewing our new eating habits as daily affirmations of health and wellness.
Monday, November 23, 2009
Q: With all the fad diets that come and go, why is a diet that is rich in antioxidants worth holding on to?
A: Antioxidants are those nutrients that can slow down oxidative stress in the body. Oxidative stress can be looked at as “rusting” in the body. Where there is oxygen, there will be reactions that produce free radicals. Free radicals are highly unstable molecules that have the capacity to cause cell and tissue damage. Antioxidants are nutrients that can make free radicals more stable and decrease their ability to cause harmful reactions in the body.
Due to the environment in which we live and even through the normal process of detoxification where free radical s are produced, it becomes essential to provide the body a constant source of antioxidant rich foods.
Q: Can you suggest some super fruits that are worth adding to your diet due to their antioxidant benefits?
A: According to the best research, those fruits that are most beneficial for their antioxidant benefits are:
- Red Grapes
You can never go wrong with berries. They are nutrient dense, have a low glycemic index and of course, are a rich source of disease fighting antioxidants.
Q: Does Red Mountain Resort & Spa has an antioxidant diet or detox diet?
A: Red Mountain has a monthly detoxification week where a specific menu is provided for those participating in the program. The meals plans consist of antioxidant rich foods and detoxification smoothies as well as other anti-inflammatory foods.
The meal plans specifically remove the most common allergenic/inflammatory foods including dairy, wheat, gluten, corn, refined flours and sugars, alcohol and caffeine. It also includes a wide variety of antioxidant dense foods such as berries and vegetables like spinach, broccoli, red peppers, onions and eggplant.
Q: How do you recommend making an antioxidant rich diet part of ones' life?
A: All meals and snack should consist of a healthy amount of antioxidant rich foods. The key is to identify those that are most pleasing to you and incorporate them into diet. Most people enjoy having a smoothie for breakfast. This can consist of a wide variety of antioxidant rich fruits. Adding blueberries to oatmeal or other hot cereal is an option. At Red Mountain, we utilize special extracts that can be added to water to make them more flavorful and increase intake of these health promoting nutrients.
Q: Can you drink your antioxidants?
A: Preparing an antioxidant rich drink is a convenient and effective way of adding antioxidants to your diet. As mentioned, Red Mountain utilizes detox smoothies and extracts added to water. We always encourage eating whole foods to increase fiber consumption.
A daily smoothie is a great way to get your antioxidants. Here is a sample of a healthy smoothie:
- ½ cup of apple juice
- ½ banana
- 1/8 cup blueberries
- 1/8 cup raspberries
- 1/8 cup blackberries
- 1/8 cup strawberries
- 2 tbs ground flax seed
- 1 scoop of rice protein powder
- 2-3 ice cubes
Friday, November 20, 2009
By Kim Watters
Here come the holidays, and I am determined to avoid that 5-8 pound holiday weight gain. My intention is to make them healthier; there for, happier by dance, dance, dancing my way through them.
Many Americans, like me, have been inspired by and are tuning in to the highly popular dance shows such as “So You Think You Can Dance,” “Dancing with the Stars” and “Americas got Talent.” These shows remind us that dancing is fun and entertaining; it allows us to socialize and it helps us to fight off those unwanted pounds. In fact, dancing has many health benefits.
The Mayo Clinic researchers reported that social dancing helps to:
- Reduce stress
- Increase energy
- Improve strength
- Increase muscle tone and coordination
The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) say that dancing can:
- Lower your risk of coronary heart disease
- Decrease blood pressure
- Help you manage your weight
- Strengthen the bones of your legs and hips
In addition, the New England Journal of Medicine published a 21-year study that found dancing can reduce the risk of Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia in the elderly.
Fortunately for us, now that dancing is growing in popularity we have many more options to get us out on the dance floor. We can find dance lessons for adults in almost every dance studio: Ballroom, Salsa, Tap, Ballet, Square dancing...
Most fitness clubs have a variety of fitness dance classes: Cardio Salsa, Hip Hop, Nia, Belly Dancing, Ballet workouts, Striptease…
If you like to keep things more private there are hundreds of dance DVD’s you can purchase. You can even learn Bollywood dance routines in your own living room.
The truth is the holidays are not a good time for weight loss and dieting; there are just too many obstacles that may lead to failure. Instead, we should set a goal of maintaining weight and enjoying the season. So forget the excuses, get inspired, and join me in dance, dance, dancing your way through the Holidays. It’s the perfect time.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
By Myrna Beardshear
Director of Spa, Health & Fitness
Bath or shower only once a day in the winter months if you have dry skin. Take shorter, warm showers, not hot. Hot baths will dry the skin. Air dry or lightly pat skin dry leaving some of the water on your skin. Immediately apply body oil or body butter to hold the moisture in the skin.
Recommended winter baths are seaweed baths, aromatherapy baths or an oatmeal/milk bath. Make your own oatmeal/milk bath by mixing equal parts of oatmeal and whole milk powdered milk.
Avoid antibacterial or deodorant soaps as they can be drying. Choose a mild PH balanced soap, diluted unscented bath gel (50% gel and 50% water), or a seaweed based cleanser to cleanse and hydrate the skin.
Winter is definitely not the time to slack off on sun protection. UV rays are still present even though you are not feeling the warmth of the sun. Use sunscreen or products that contain SPF 15 and if your go skiing use an SPF 30.
How to Exfoliate:
Dead skin builds up faster in the dry of the winter than in the summer heat. We suggest exfoliating at least once a week to slough off the dead skin. Exfoliation not only rids your body of dead skin cells but improves circulation and lymph flow. Using circular motions exfoliate the skin starting on the left leg, in circular movements up the leg. Concentrate on dry heels and knees. Do not exfoliate over varicose veins. Follow the process on the right leg and then do in circular motion over the buttocks and gently over the colon area in a clockwise motion. Move up over the stomach and diaphragm area, moving around the breast area and lightly over the chest area. Then using the same motion, do the left and then right arms. The back can be done, remembering to move toward the heart. Your skin should be slightly pink, slightly tingly. Do not do this treatment in the late afternoon or evening, as it will affect your sleep, as it is very stimulating.
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
By Cindy Clemens
Life Coach at Red Mountain Resort & Spa
These are challenging times we are living through. Bad news on the financial picture assaults us at every corner. The pain is definitely spreading to Main Street. Yet in the midst of this negative swirl, there are several tools you can use to cope with the stresses and strains from these tough economic times.
First, do whatever it takes to keep your energy tank full right now. You need it to be full – you are spending lots of extra energy dealing with your own worries and concerns as well as those of your co-workers, family and friends. Plus, you need to be able to do your best thinking and processing in the days and months ahead. Curveballs may very well come your way, and you need to be strong and well. Focus on getting plenty of rest, moving your body, and nourishing yourself with healthy and delicious foods. You may not be able to change the macro conditions, but you can exercise control over how well you are treating yourself.
Second, decide to minimize the negative drama and fear mongering in your life. Get the smallest dose of news and information possible that you need to keep afloat of your finances and make prudent decisions. Resist the temptation to dwell in negativity all day long. Find something that is working in your life, put your energy in that direction and feel some joy and happiness. Decide to forgive yourself if you have made poor past decisions, and commit to righting your ship. Spend time with as many positive and uplifting people as you can, and certainly avoid the doomsayers and critics right now. Choose to feel good, even now, and have love in your heart for yourself and others.
Third, keep the flow of abundance open and operational in your life right now. Tempting as it is to tighten up our belts and excuse ourselves from giving because of the economic conditions, this sends out the exact wrong message to the Universe. It says there is not enough for all of us, there is scarcity, and we cannot share our few crumbs. Because we manifest more of what we focus on, whether positive or negative, we manifest more of not enough, scarcity, and fear. We become clogged up, by our own beliefs, and the Universe must abide by those beliefs and send us more of what focus on. To change this process, we need to demonstrate that we believe in abundance and share with others when we are inspired to do so. Try starting your day by acknowledging what you do have and asking for guidance in how you can share your time, talents, or treasures during the day. At night take a couple of minutes to reflect on how accomplished this. This will act like roto rooter in your belief system pipes and get the abundance flow going again.
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
2. Hamstring and calf stretch- sit towards the front edge of your chair. Straighten your legs, and pull your toes towards your shins. Lean forward with your hands on the tops of your thighs for support (flexing at your hip joints).
3. Glutei’s, hip and outer thigh stretch- sit towards the front edge of your chair. Cross your left ankle over your right knee and lean forward flexing from your hip joints, moving your chest closer to your shin bone.
4. Ab and side stretch- sit towards the front edge of your chair. lengthen your arms over head and exaggerate your reach. Also, try reaching farther through your right hand lengthening the right side of your body more, then switch reaching through the left hand and the right heel.
Monday, November 16, 2009
Tofu Chocolate Orange Mousse
By Dale Van Sky
Yield: About 16 oz Servings: 4 Serving Size: 4 oz
12.5 oz Soft Tofu
3 oz Dark Chocolate
1/3 C Cocoa Powder
¼ C Boiling Water
1 T Orange Zest
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
2/3 C Powdered Sugar
1. Melt Dark Chocolate with Boiling Water.
2. Place all ingredients in food processor and puree until smooth.
3. Top with Fructose Candied Orange Zest.
Friday, November 13, 2009
Focus & Recharge
By Tracey Welsh
As you find yourself distracted by the busyness of every day life. Step back - to gain the clarity, commitment, and courage to move forward. Allowing yourself the time to focus and recharge to create a plan to move ahead creates balance and reduces your stress immensely. Too often we move with the intensity of the busy world around us, and find ourselves more stressed because we make the wrong move, and didn't give ourselves the time to plan.
Reduce stress and balance by taking time to take care of yourself, as this is what you can control. As Red Mountain Spa Life Coach Cindy Clemens says, "Resign as the Master of the Universe" and take care of you.
Nurture yourself with healthy food. Get outside and enjoy nature. Fill yourself with the endorphins created by exercise and you'll find yourself with a more positive outlook and more energy. This is the perfect time to try something new, like yoga, tai chi or meditation to learn stress reducing techniques.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
By Mark Montgomery, L. Ac., Dipl. Ac.
Certified Zero Balancer
A few years ago one of my clients was diagnosed with uterine cancer. She eventually received a complete hysterectomy at the Huntsman Cancer Center in Salt Lake City and has done well ever since. What struck me about her experience was that when I went to see her at Huntsman, I learned that the doctors there had performed several additional procedures on her because of prior medical conditions which posed a higher risk to her during surgery. Nearly a decade earlier a clot from her leg had gone to her lungs and nearly killed her. So a day or two before her hysterectomy surgeons opened the femoral vein in her leg and threaded an intricate steel filter up into the inferior vena cava, the large vein just above the area of the surgery, to prevent any clots from the surgery from traveling up to her lungs or heart during or after the operation. A few weeks after the surgery they removed the filter, this time by going in through the jugular vein in her throat, traveling down through her heart and pulling the filter out through her heart.
As a practitioner of Chinese medicine I found this astounding because it shows so clearly the technological advances of Western medicine, which Chinese medicine has never even approached. And yet, at the same time, I was also astonished to hear from her that during the entire time she was at the cancer center not a single physician, nurse or staff member talked to her about the lifestyle changes she could make to help her avoid recurrence of the cancer.
This story, to me, summarizes one of the main differences between Western and Chinese medicine: the ability to perform miraculous high-technology interventions versus a strong emphasis on understanding the influences, both external and internal, that lead to disease and on learning how to lead a life that minimizes those influences.
The foundation of Chinese medicine is the idea of balance, the idea that the body automatically regulates and heals itself in ways that are far too complex for human understanding. From this perspective the job of a healer is not to perform miraculous interventions but to understand what got the body off track in its healing processes and to gently support it in getting back on track - “to remind it of what it already knows,” as acupuncture students often hear from their teachers in acupuncture school.
Cancer is a disease that occurs when this ability of the body to monitor, regulate and heal from cells growing out of control somehow breaks down. Added to the challenges of the disease itself, the process of healing from cancer using conventional western medicine can be a disempowering and frightening experience, traumatizing survivors and often leaving them feeling alienated from their bodes.
Acupuncture and related bodywork therapies like Zero Balancing can facilitate the process of healing from cancer in many ways. First, they can help survivors to “de-stress,” to shift from the “fight or flight” mode into the “rest and digest” mode. This promotes healing and smoothes the process of re-entry into day-to-day life.
Secondly, acupuncture and Zero Balancing can help to clear the energetic blockages that in Chinese medicine are considered responsible not only for pain and constriction in the skeletal system and the internal organs but also for emotional imbalances like depression, anxiety and “inappropriate “ anger or sadness. Many patients report that after the insertion of the needles they feel a sense of “flow” or “something opening up” or, on the emotional level, a feeling of “a load dropping off my shoulders” or “letting go” of issues they were struggling with.
A third benefit of acupuncture is that as this “flow” begins to reassert itself patients often begin to feel as if their bodies are “waking up”. It’s not unusual for patients to make remarks like,” Those flowers outside the building that I barely noticed on the way in seemed so bright they shocked me when I left my treatment.” This, again, is a function of heightened energy flow leading to greater consciousness of one’s environment. And it also works on the inside as well, as the body’s heightened awareness leads it to respond more effectively to the drugs and other therapies or techniques the patient is using. In fact, patients frequently discover that, under the advisement of their physician, they are able to begin reducing their medications after starting acupuncture.
Coming back to the story at the beginning of this article, this heightened awareness also helps cancer survivors to become their own best lifestyle consultants, not needing as much to rely on the advice of doctors, nurses or even acupuncturists. As they continue with their healing they are often able to more quickly sense what it is they need in their lives and whether or not something they are doing is working well for them. This allows them to make the necessary “course corrections,” making changes that benefit them. And this creates a “virtuous circle” by which they move to higher levels of wellness, in turn heightening their awareness and making even more progress possible. This sense of helping patients to develop an inner compass is what the ancient masters of acupuncture meant when they said, “The inferior physician treats disease after it has occurred. The superior physician treats illness before it has even begun.”
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
By Myrna Beardshear
Director of Spa, Health & Fitness
Massage is often seen as just a reliever of physical discomfort, but in reality a relaxing massage can help calm the mind too. By using different massage techniques, massage therapists are able to loosen sore muscles, increase circulation and improve mental clarity.
Not able to get to the spa? Foot massage, or reflexology, is actually an ancient practice of manipulation and stimulation to restore health and balance to the entire body through reflex therapy applied to the feet. Reflexology diagram cards showing the pressure points on your feet are available everywhere and are easy to follow.
- Take off your shoes.
- Rub the brain, stomach and solar plexus reflexology points on your feet.
- The brain, your body's mental stress center, is at the point of the base of the ball of the big toe.
- Relieve anxiety by rubbing the stomach, located at the arch of the foot.
- Considered to be the "nerve switchboard of the body," press the solar plexus, located at the center of the base of the ball of the foot, for 20 to 30 seconds on each foot.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Hold both arms over your head, lace your fingers together and keep your arms straight. Gently bend towards the left moving your ribcage towards your hip bone and lift your hip bone up towards your ribcage. Return back to center and repeat to the right side (8-12 repetitions).
Monday, November 9, 2009
By Lynnette Beck
Red Mountain Baker
Yield: About 12 oz Servings: 12 Cookies Serving Size: 1 oz
1 ¾ T Butter, softened
4 ¾ T Brown Suger, packed
2 ½ T Sugar
2 ¼ oz Pumpkin, solid pack
½ T Egg
1/8 tsp Vanilla Extract
5 fl oz Wheat Flour, all-purpose
2 ½ fl oz Quick-cooking Oats
¼ tsp Baking Soda
¼ tsp Cinnamon, ground
1/8 tsp Salt
5 T Chocolate Chips, semi-sweet
- In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars.
- Beat in the pumpkin, egg and vanilla.
- Combine the flour, oats, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture.
- Stir in chocolate chips.
- Drop by slightly heaping tablespoonfuls 2 in. apart onto ungreased baking sheets.
- Bake at 350o for 10-12 minutes until lightly browned.
- Remove to wire racks to cool.
Recipe Nutrient Analysis, Single Serving:
Saturated Fat: 2g
Total Dietary Fiber: trace
Sunday, November 8, 2009
M.E.E.T = Mustang, Educational, Experiential, Training
Connect spirit to spirit with American Wild Mustangs. Windhorse Relations is a non-profit organization that uses the American Mustang to teach humans how to create willing experiences. Most participants have little or no experience with horses, and learn to replace fear, stress, anxiety and emotional trauma with peace, strength and emotional balance.
Create Willing Relationships
This private group teambuilding adventure is a fun and transforming experience using American Wild Mustangs as teachers and foster leadership through empowerment and non-verbal communication. Learn "Working the Edge," a powerful technique for transforming fear into curiosity, resistance into cooperation and tolerance into willingness.
To learn more about this adventure, visit our website at
About Windhorse Relations
Mary Lee Brighton and Marcia Thayne have created this dynamic and effective program using wild mustangs as teachers. The program incorporates 35 years of Mary's professional training skills and Marcia's experience in education into a powerful Equine Experiential Training which is very successful in Utah. Mary Lee chose wild mustangs rather than domesticated horses because of their intelligence, awareness, and physical capabilities that have allowed them to survive over the years.
Friday, November 6, 2009
By Reema Sayegh, PhD
It’s that time of year again! Don’t we all look forward to getting together with friends and family, attending office parties, shopping the malls, and decking the halls?
What follows is basic survival strategy in order partake in all festivities and still fit into our clothes in January!
When we’re about to fall over from shopping overload, and need a quick meal at the food court, we can make a sensible choice that won’t eat up half a day’s caloric ration. McDonald’s has a snack size frozen yogurt parfait (sans granola) for 130 calories. Chick-Fil-A offers a small size chicken soup for 140 calories, and Taco Bell has a pintos-n-cheese cup for 180 calories. These options are not elaborate, gourmet meals, but they can hold us over until we get home to continue more healthful selections!
When shopping for holiday groceries cruise the periphery of the grocery store and skip the snack aisle! Now’s the time to grab some whole foods (think: fruits and vegetables), pre-made salads and deli items as well.
When it’s time for the office soiree, it’s always a good idea to eat a small snack beforehand. Some almonds and an apple can really “fill in the gaps” and if we can also drink eight to 12 ounces of water prior to the event, we’ll really be ahead of the game.
At the party, it’s best to sit away from the food and put the fork down between bites. Remember portions, too! One ounce of cheese is roughly the size of a pair of dice. Instead of chips and dip, try crudités and salsa. Just that substitution alone can save over 300 calories, boost fiber and antioxidant intake, and fill us up. Eat slowly, as it really does take a minimum of 20 minutes for us to realize we’re full. If we’re imbibing, we need to remember that a glass of wine tops out at around 150 calories, is high in sugar, and does not count as a resveratrol serving. If we order some fruit juice with a splash of Seltzer water, we can save almost 100 calories!
Got family obligations? No problem! Try a dish of steamed vegetables in lieu of the green bean casserole, or baked sweet potatoes in lieu of the gooey marshmallow version. If cooking red meat, select leaner cuts like loin, round and extra lean, and roast, bake, braise or broil. If the bird’s the thing, remove the skin prior to serving and try cooking the stuffing separately. Pass on seconds, and sit quietly when you’ve finished the food, remembering that not every social gathering has to be all about the food
Finally, don’t be overzealous with your goals this time of year. It’s stressful enough to brave the weather, traffic, crowds, office jokes, and challenging family members! Don’t add trying to lose weight to the equation. Be realistic, and tell yourself you will maintain your current weight through the holiday season. Having clothes that fit on New Year’s Day is quite an accomplishment in and of itself. Happy Holidays!
Thursday, November 5, 2009
By Myrna Beardshear
Director of Spa, Health & Fitness
In the clutter and pressure of the holidays, we need to take whatever time is necessary to be free of stress and feel great about our lives. This means we need to pamper ourselves and do special things for ourselves that will make us feel good. In doing so, others will feel good about being around us. Especially, it is at this time of the year that so many of us allow the special people or partners in our life to feel neglected.
When we get in the habit of doing things graciously for ourselves we start to develop a romantic life that we can share with others. Take time each day to tell yourself that you’re special and that you love yourself. Smile, listen to your own voice and think good thoughts. Look your best and be charming. Be sensuous. When you can be all these things for yourself you can take on creating a romantic environment for others.
When you wake up in the morning, instead of drinking your morning beverage in that old holiday coffee mug, try a china mug or a decorated cup and saucer. Remind yourself that you’re serving someone you love and want to please.
If you like to exercise try spraying the room with an invigorating aromatherapy spritz before you start. Instead of your sloppy old exercise clothes invest in something new and pretty. Don’t just jump into the shower, but take the time to have a relaxing bubble bath and have a ten-minute rest afterwards wrapped in a luxurious terry robe.
If you’re having a meal alone, take time to prepare a tray for yourself with pretty china a cloth napkin and a flower.
Take time to plan a special shopping spree. Enjoy being able to go out holiday shopping for some soft romantic clothes for your special times at home and if you have a loved one sharing your life, surprise them with a holiday gift of lingerie or a silk robe or pajamas.
Remember all the fun you used to have just cuddling on the couch with a beverage and the winter fireplace crackling. Well even if the old couch is long gone and the logs aren’t real, you can bring back romance at home with just a little planning.
If you want to plan a special, romantic evening, let your partner know ahead of time so that they’ll be in the mood. Send an invitation, tuck a note into a pocket, scented with your favorite fragrance or merely hint that you will be waiting tonight. Make a phone call to remind him/her about the wonderful evening you are planning.
A romantic evening at home requires the right atmosphere. Make arrangements to have to children stay overnight with family or friends.
A romantic lace cloth over a normally bare table and candles with romantic fragrances set the tone of the room. Low lights – music that you both enjoy and a comfy place to snuggle add to the affect. Bring pillows to the couch or lay them out on the carpet. Have food and drink nearby on the living room table and turn off the television and the ringer on the phone.
Take time to make up a menu of romantic food for your special evening. Make sure it can be prepared ahead of time. Finger foods can prove very satisfying and are often fun to share with someone or even feed to someone.
Buy some fresh flowers to place in the living room and bedroom.
Remember, you’re trying to create a romantic evening and a very special escape from the holiday rush.
Therefore, try some of the following flowers:
Roses – harmonious and patient love
Tuberose – peace and love, emotional control
Lavender – spiritual love, true love and romantic
Spider Lily – love and peace.
Stock up on just the right candles. Use soy candles with essential oils such as rose, sandalwood, cedar, ylang-ylang and bergamot.
There is nothing more soothing and loving than a gentle caress, a hug, a pat on the fanny or touch on the hand. Someone, just gently stroking your hair as they pass your chair and a special look from across a crowded room. This is love in action, tenderness, affectionate touches and looks. These little actions can reassure, communicate, soothe and keep your love life glowing and romantic and enhance your holidays.
Take time during the holiday season and throughout the year to live graciously and romantically and remember to express your love often – for yourself and the special people in your life.