Swtch week 13Welcome to our healthy lifestyle challenge lead by our program dietitian Vicki Bovee and her husband Bill. Because we can always do better to live a healthier lifestyle Vicki and Bill decided to work on a weekly challenge together to provide support and accountability for each other and hopefully inspire you to make healthy changes. Follow along with them as they tackle a variety of challenges to eat better, eat more mindfully, and improve physical health and emotional well-being. Vicki and Bill invite you to participate and accept the challenges to improve your lifestyle too. Some of them may be difficult and please feel free to modify the challenges to accommodate your dietary needs and physical abilities.

Challenge # 13 Switch it up.
I have been a regular exerciser for 30 years. I think the longest time I have lapsed has been a couple of months once or twice and this was because of moving. I started years ago pedaling a stationary bike in front of General Hospital when the kids were napping. I then moved on to aerobics and danced my way across the exercise floor for years. After awhile, this wasn’t producing results and I was getting burned out so I went to the gym and started strength training. A couple of week ago I figured out I have been lifting weights for 24 years. Yikes! After two rotator cuff repair surgeries I can tell you I don’t lift nearly as much as I used to. And I have always been a walker.
We work out in the gym here at St. Mary’s Center for Health and I love it. But as much as I love this gym, my workouts were getting old and boring. It was time to switch it up and move out of my stagnant routine. I also know that after a while I get to the point of diminishing return and I have to change my program to see progress and maintain motivation. I need to work my muscles differently and I need to challenge my brain with something new. “If you always do what you always did, you’ll always get what you always got.”
And switch it up we did. Both of us have become more “balance-challenged” as we have gotten older. I go to Tai Chi class a couple of times of week and though that is good balance training, my balance still needs work. Our switch it up started with learning how to use the agility ladder. That’s the thing on the ground that the football players use. We met with personal trainer, Michail Kyriakou, who taught us the basics. Well, that was fun. Now what else can we do? We signed up for an introduction to yoga class. That was not my cup of tea but Bill liked it. We signed up for Pilates Reformer orientation classes. Yesss, I can feel like I am doing strength training without lifting weights. Pilates will become a regular class for us. We spent an hour with Michail who gave us a program working on our strength and balance at the same time. Loved it! Form is everything to prevent injuries and he made sure we were doing it correctly. I went to an “age-appropriate” group fitness class. Oh my gosh. We started with grapevines and I felt like I had come full circle back to the old aerobics days. I continued with my Tai Chi but even changed that by moving out of my usual space and to the other side of the room. The only thing that remained the same was my walking routine.
Now I know this was a lot easier for us because of our gym membership, but you don’t have to go to a gym to change up your routine. If you’re not doing any intentional activity, doing anything if only for 5 minutes, will change your routine. If you’re a walker, find a new route. If you go to the gym, try new machines or classes. If you exercise alone, find a partner. By changing your routine you can break weight loss plateaus, prevent overuse injuries, build new muscle, and feel a whole lot better about yourself because you are doing something good for your body.

Vicki’s Observations:
• What a great week for exercise. Because I was trying new things, I looked forward to working out.
• I experienced little stiffness because I was careful about what I did and let the professionals check and correct my form. It is worth the money spent to learn how to do things properly.
• Just like Tai Chi, there is a learning curve with Pilates and although I am the rookie in the class, at some point I will be able to advance with continued practice.
• Just like Tai Chi, I met some really nice people this week and it’s good to see smiling new faces.

Bill’s Observations:
• I was getting bored at the gym lately, so having a chance to experience new workouts was a blessing.
• Pilates has helped the pain in my right hip and I am learning to strengthen my muscles in a different way. It is a much more controlled workout.
• Working with Michail and learning new ways to become more limber and agile is something that I have been looking to do for quite awhile. My body loves the new workouts.
• I have hit my desired weight and now I want to make my body feel more limber and stronger. These new programs we learned will go a long ways to help me achieve my goals.

Do what you have to do to move more. It doesn’t just happen and the best way is to put in on your schedule is as an appointment with yourself. Just like we see here at WBI, if you “no show” you most likely won’t see much improvement or success.
It’s hard to believe we have been doing our weekly challenges for 13 weeks. We’ll make some time to review our past efforts and reflect our successes and continuing challenges.
Eat Smarter…
Vicki Bovee, MS, RDN, LD

Want to catch up on what you’ve missed?

The road to success is always under construction. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-weekly-lifestyle-challenge/
Challenge #1 Eat everything sitting down. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-weekly-lifestyle-challenge-week-one/
Challenge #2 Eliminate cheese as an ingredient. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-challenge-week-two/
Challenge #3 Walk sideways in your home. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-challenge-week-three/
Challenge #4 Include a fresh herb in your daily meal plan. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-challenge-week-four/
Challenge #5 If there is food in your mouth there should be nothing in your hand. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-weekly-challenge-week-five/
Challenge #6 Eat the MyPlate recommendations for fruits and vegetables. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-challenge-week-6/
Challenge #7 Stand (and walk if possible) while talking on the phone. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-challenge-week-7/
Challenge # 8 Don’t eat out of the package. Put your food on a plate or in a bowl. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-challenge-week-8/
Challenge # 9 Keep a food record. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-challenge-week-nine/

Challenge # 10 Power down while eating. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-challenge-week-10/

Challenge # 11 Eating to reduce inflammation. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-challenge-week-11/

Challenge # 12 Eating to help our environment. https://www.westernsurgical.com/bariatric-surgery/wbi-healthy-lifestyle-challenge-week-12/