Dust In My Coffee

Loving my life as a woman in agriculture one sip at a time

What does it mean to you to be fit?  Is it an exercise program or a combination of diet and exercise? The focus on fitness began in the early 1980’s for me.  Fitness for me was more about exercising and looking good versus improving overall health.   After college I joined a YMCA to take a Jazzercise class that sounded like much more fun than running.  I was sold quickly on the music with exercise routines and advanced to the more rigorous aerobic dance classes.  When I moved to Dodge my husband encouraged me to start classes in the area.   I became a certified instructor and taught aerobic dance classes in Snyder, Dodge and Howells.  I have many fond memories of the fit that was happening in those exercise classes.

After our fifth child, Kim, was born I used a step exercise
program.  The step was collapsable so I could use it anywhere.
As you can see here the kids also enjoyed using the step!

Fast forward forty years and I am no longer dancing my way to fitness by telling students to kick that leg higher, pull in the stomach or to keep breathing.  I am still concerned about the exercise portion of being fit and have found a variety of ways to make that happen.  While some of my exercise is planned, the majority of my exercise is related to my daily work on our feedlot where more than just fit happens.  I am privileged to have a job that allows me to move throughout the day.  I have also learned, though, that a bit of time on the treadmill early in the morning gives me more energy for the day.  Yes, it’s an odd sort of consequence that exercising will give you more energy, but it’s true!

Did you know household cleaning can burn 170 calories per
hour?  There was a time when our son, Jeff, loved to ride
the vacuum adding a increased weight training.

While exercise has been the majority of my focus on fitness over the years my overall well-being has taught me that exercise alone is not enough.   I can no longer freely nibble on M&M’s (my favorite stress food) or eat as much as I want whenever I want.  Another bad habit I had-skipping breakfast- was a major culprit to eating snacks later in the day.  To keep fit happening I needed to address my eating habits.

I have found my cravings for snacks start to disappear when I eat 20-30 grams of protein for breakfast. I know that protein has power when it comes to weight management.  Several studies show the importance of eating enough protein throughout the day, not just at one meal.  Consuming 30 grams three times a day is recommended.  There are a variety of ways to have protein for breakfast including eggs, beef and protein bars that use soy-based protein.  I can get the same amount of protein from this easy recipe for a beef and egg breakfast mug as I can in 5 protein bars–and with fewer calories–as seen in this video.

Some of you might be using devices like the FitBit to track your physical activity.  There is a great program that can help you track the protein you eat called 30 Day Protein Challenge.  If you have a handle on your exercise routine then this protein challenge could be the next step to increasing your overall well-being. 

I love to promote beef as a source of protein.  Here is a photo
from an in-store demo of rib eye steak.  I had one customer so
unsure of what the cut was that she had me to over to the meat
counter and point exactly to the rib eye steaks.  You can learn
all about beef cuts and preparation methods here.

Making fit happen has been an ongoing learning experience.  There is not a one size fits all when it comes to incorporating exercise, diet and rest to obtain optimal health.  If you are looking for increased energy and/or weight loss I would encourage you to first find an exercise program that is flexible to your schedule and incorporate more protein in your diet.

I would love to know what you do to make fit happen in your own life.  If you have suggestions, tips or ideas that have worked for you please share them in the comments below.  Now, go make fit happen in your life!

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