Tag Archives: sleep

The Next Best Thing

Inspiration from the iGnite Archives

April24_2016

Point to Ponder:
Do you struggle with contentment, have trouble appreciating your life and/or find yourself always looking for the next best thing?

iGnite Neissa

by Neissa Brown Springmann

In an effort to fill my life with as much motivation and positive thinking as possible, I subscribe to inspirational and spiritual email services, read nurturing books, surround myself with “light-giving” people, spend time outside and try to exercise several times a week. One of the email newsletters I receive is called Simple Truths, and several times a week they send quotes, short videos and exerts from their books. Just this week I scrolled through one of the newsletters titled “Attitude is Everything.” Honestly, because this message has been drilled into my brain since as far back as I can remember, I initially disregarded it, as I knew it wasn’t going to be new information. This was “old hat” and the reality is that I was looking for cutting-edge wisdom — the latest and greatest that would knock my socks off.

Never-the-less, I reluctantly played the encouraging video and as I suspected there was nothing new. I had read and listened to these words hundreds of times, however because it was ageless wisdom and my life is always evolving, it actually blew my socks off, again! The words were relevant and a necessary way of thinking and living. I immediately became re-inspired and humbled, and it dawned on me that my way of thinking is what led Eve down the path of destruction. I was looking for the next best thing, the shiny and juicy red apple that would give me an advantage in life, but the truth is the old and simple stuff was plenty good. It was enough. In addition, good and bad habits are formed upon repetition and because the substance of the following inspiration by Simple Truth is vital to keeping a positive state of mind, I will continue to read, share, and try my best to live it. Here is what they suggest:

Wait to Worry
Only 8% of what we worry about comes true.
“Anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, but only empties today of its strength.” ~ Charles Spurgeon

Keep an Attitude of Gratitude
Count your blessings and jot them down.
“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” ~ William Arthur Ward

Your Health is Your Wealth
If you lose your health you lost everything. Take time to exercise, catch up on your sleep and eat right.
“One of the main qualities it takes to be successful is energy….it may be the only thing.” ~ Katharine Hepburn

Joy Boomerangs
Do something for someone else….the good you do boomerangs back to you!
“If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.” ~ Booker T. Washington

Learn to Say “No”
We have limits to our time, energy and interests.
“If we always say ‘yes,’ we run a greater danger of severing relationships than if we refuse right away.” ~ Vicki Hitzges

Understand the Power of Discipline
If you discipline yourself today, you’ll enjoy your life tomorrow.
“Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody else expects of you.” ~ Henry Ward Beecher

Surround Yourself with Positive People
Find people who will challenge you, believe in your and inspire you to improve.
“To love and be loved is to feel the sun from both sides.” ~ David Viscott

All in all, I do think it is important to be open to learning and exploring new things. Knowledge is power and a key component of growth, however I also believe that most humans struggle with contentment (THAT’S ME!) which keeps us chasing the next best thing and in a perpetual state of wanting and needing more. Therefore, as we continue to seek new information, opportunities, and adventure, remember to not over-think it and keep it simple. We don’t have to reinvent the wheel and most often our most sacred treasures are right under our noses, like the bee pollinating the flower in the picture. While the bee is only a tiny little insect, they are the most efficient pollinators whose impact is incredible! Without them, many of the flowers we love would not exist, we would not be able to enjoy the deliciousness of honey as well as a long list of fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains. However, because of that simple little critter, life is a whole lot sweeter, just as so many other “little things” in our life.

Action Item:
Practice contentment by taking a moment to stop, breathe and focus on your life: the tumultuous times you have overcome and the wisdom you thankfully gained from them; the struggles and inconveniences that you are currently enduring and the growth opportunities you are receiving from them; and the relationships, blessings and “little things” that you might often look past. In this busy, accomplishment-oriented and task-driven world we live in, take the time to focus on the “small things” and give thanks for the big impact they have had and currently have on your life.

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‘Enough is Enough!’

iGnite - remove the unnecessary

Photo from this summer’s iGnite Escape in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

Point to Ponder:
What have you had “enough” of? What are you wasting your time and life on?
What keeps you running on the treadmill to nowhere and is keeping you from living your life, being fully present and feeling great?

by Neissa Brown Springmann

by Neissa Brown Springmann

Recently I ran across a motivating radio show series called “Enough is Enough,” and as I listened, I became more inspired to also declare what I had had enough of in my life.

In last week’s journal I shared my realization that my current purpose/mission changed from what I originally thought it would be at this time. Prior to this, I was running myself ragged and trying to live up to the ridiculous expectations I placed on myself, which led me to declaring that ‘enough was enough!’ of letting my ego be my north star. ‘Enough was enough!’ of giving into the lie that my controlling ways were better than turning everything over to God in prayer. ‘Enough was enough!” of screaming at my kids and not being a present mom because I was stressed out of my mind due to believing that I needed to do more and was not enough unless I was multi-tasking and focused on accomplishing a million things.

So, what have you had “enough” of? What types of things are consuming your time and energy? What keeps you running on a treadmill to nowhere and is keeping you from living your best life, being fully present and feeling great? Because women share similar heartbeats and the human experience is not unique, here are some ‘enoughs’ that instantly came to my mind and might resonate with you too:

Do you struggle with living up to the expectations of others and are too hard on yourself? Are the people you are spending the majority of your time with life-suckers rather than life-givers? Do you live on an emotional roller-coaster because you are too involved in your children’s lives, care too much about the opinions of others, make too many assumptions and take everything personally? Have you neglected your needs and are not getting enough sleep, healthy food, adequate hydration and exercise? Have you busied yourself, are completely stressed-out and therefore your words, interactions and body language are negative, cold and argumentative? Do you no longer attend church or have a day off for faith, family and rest because your children’s extra-curricular activities have taken over or you’ve replaced it with more work? Do you wrestle with control and worry too much? Is your financial situation and spending out of balance? Have you placed a higher value on work and outside commitments and as a result neglected the needs of your spouse or the people you love? Have you bought into the lie that God didn’t create you “enough,” and therefore you have low confidence? Do the destructive emotions of shame, fear and doubt control your life? Do you reject the love of others or can’t trust others because someone didn’t love you back or violated your trust? Do you procrastinate or keep putting off what is necessary and important in your life?

With only a little over two months left in 2015 (EEK!), I want us to be intentional with the way we spend the remainder of our year by declaring and writing down the “enoughs” in our lives on this printable worksheet. By doing this, your spirit will give you valuable knowledge and information about what you are willing to accept in your life. This level of awareness and information will minimize the chances of transferring negative actions and emotional garbage into 2016 and will promote healthy progress by adding what’s necessary, rich and wonderful into your new year and life!

Action Item:
Be intentional with the way you spend the remainder of your year by declaring and writing down the ‘enoughs’ in your life on this printable worksheet.

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Our 20 Habits for Feeling Our Best

20 Habits for Feeling Your Best

As a group of health & fitness professionals, the iGnite leadership team uses a number of habits to keep ourselves feeling our absolute best.  And since we all love hearing new ideas, tips & tricks for living our best life, we thought — better to share them!  So, here are some of our team’s tips & tricks for feeling our best — hopefully you’ll find they enhance and improve your life in body, mind and spirit, too 🙂

1. Prioritize Sleep

Catherine Sanderson

Catherine Sanderson

“The thing that has made the biggest difference in making my body feel its best and healthiest has been prioritizing SLEEP.  Yes, that means over working out(!), over late nights of squeezing in that last to-do followed by early mornings, over my favorite tv shows, over … lots of things! I’ve found that I am a completely new person when I make sure that I get around 8 hours of sleep.  The idea that you will be ‘healthier’ if you skimp on sleep in order to exercise more is just plain wrong.  Your body needs sleep to heal and rest before it can perform exercise well and in a way that is helping your body more than hurting it. The second I accepted this and prioritized sleep for health above all else, my energy, mood and ability to take on other things skyrocketed.
I’ve learned that that workout/errand/to do list item/television show can wait.  Making sleep #1 and then scheduling in an exercise routine that allows me to get the zzzzzz’s our bodies so crave is my feel-great secret!”  

2. Prepared Healthy Snacks

Amy Younkman

Amy Younkman

“I always fave a variety of cut-up veggies in the fridge so I’m less apt to reach for crackers to dip and munch on.”

3. Regularly Getting in the Water

Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker

Dunking myself in any water, anywhere, anytime is something that I crave and that makes me feel rejuvenated.  Studies have proven that if you are in, on or near water you are 90 percent happier!  I don’t think there is anyone around who does not feel rejuvenated when jumping in a pool, river, lake or ocean.”

4. Take Probiotics

Betty Cunningham

Betty Cunningham

“One of my stay healthy secrets is Ortho Probiotic.  I used to suffer from dry mold allergies every fall.  I was congested from October into November, and I had a constant cough.   The Ortho Probiotic has made a huge difference.  I take one in the morning on an empty stomach before I run.”

5. Planned Date Nights

Amy Younkman

Amy Younkman

“One thing that helps me feel my best is my Friday date night with the hubster at Fonda San Miguel here in Austin – we hit happy hour followed by a quiet evening at home.”

6. Get Regular Massages

Jill Watts

Jill Watts

“I get monthly massages at Massage Envy, it’s reasonably priced and a sure way to get yourself a relaxing massage once a month! I really enjoy it — they have great therapists for all types of massage and the monthly fee is only $59.99. Plus you get other perks and discounts being a member and you can go to locations all over the U.S. if you want to get a massage while traveling.”

Molly Daniels

Molly Daniels

“I make sure to schedule a 60 minute massage quarterly, if not more often! I have been to several places in Austin, all varying in price, including Mecca Gym and Spa, Massage Harmony in Westlake and Foot Massage in Northwest Hills. With how much I am on my feet during the week, I make this a priority to help me feel good!”

7. Morning Prayer

Amy Younkman

Amy Younkman

“I make sure to pray before I get out of bed in the morning.”

8. Juicing

Jill Watts

Jill Watts

“I bought a NutriBullet about a year ago and I absolutely love it! I try to have one a day, and it’s a perfect way to get a healthy boost without spending $8 on a green smoothie.
I just pop in 1/2 greens (I prefer spinach), and then 1/2 fruits, (whatever I have) and then a boost like flax seed, chia, almonds, etc.  Then you just add water, so no added sugar!
It takes a few minutes to extract all the healthy nutrients from those veggies and fruits. You can put any type of veggie and fruit in. It’s quick, easy and healthy!”

9. Calming Pet Time

Cary Fyfe

Cary Fyfe

“My go-to for nurturing my emotional self is to sit down — that’s the key part, sitting down — to pet my dog, Sam. Within seconds, I feel my heart slow down, my brain quiets and a smile comes across my face — no matter what weights I’m carrying that day. Then the icing on the cake is when all my other animals hear the “love-rubs” happening, and here they come! It’s a guaranteed drop in blood pressure…and, really, what is better than a dog-smile?”

10. Homemade Skin Care

Alli Phillips

Alli Phillips

“With ingredients most of us probably already have in our pantry and fridge, I create lotions, scrubs, and occasionally masks, to supplement my skin-care routine. I have a few “must-have” skin-care staples, listed below.  And when I have time to treat myself to a full “home-spa-day” I’ll experiment with more “complex” recipes.

Unrefined Organic Coconut Oil
Instead of store-bought moisturizer and body lotion, I use coconut oil (unrefined and organic) on my skin. I apply it daily after I shower/bathe to both body and face, and I also use the excess on my hands as a “leave-in conditioner,” running my fingers through my hair after applying to my face and body. (Also, although I don’t wear make-up very often, I discovered coconut oil is a great natural make-up remover.)

Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil & Organic Brown Sugar
About once a week I make a body-scrub using EVOO and brown sugar. I don’t follow a recipe, I simply mix the two ingredients together adding more or less of one or the other until I get the consistency/texture I want, depending on the exfoliation intensity needed/desired (coarse for feet, legs, hands, and arms; medium coarseness for torso; light coarseness for neck and face). This scrub is very gentle and leaves the skin feeling amazing.

In a quick online search of “home-made skin-care” you’ll find countless recipes that include nourishing yet simple ingredients like oats, honey, almond milk, peaches, avocado, pumpkin, cucumber, lemon, and even coffee and cocoa(!) to name just a few!”

11. Nutritionist Consultations

Molly Daniels

Molly Daniels

“I see Applied Clinical Nutritionist Joseph Strickland of Better Body Clinical Nutrition once every 12 weeks. I began seeing Joseph in May 2012 specifically for allergy issues, hives, and constant fatigue, and after the success I’ve had with him, I continue my visits to check in and see how my body is functioning. I currently take 4 different Standard Process supplements that he specifically recommends for my body that I buy from People’s Pharmacy. I can tell a difference when I miss a day or two, and I know how important they are for me to maintain a healthy body.”

12. Nighttime Technology Turnoff

Amy Younkman

Amy Younkman

“I make sure to turn off the computer at night and crawl into bed with a good read.”

13. Evening Treat

Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker

“I always drink a large glass of chocolate milk each evening.  It has been proven by studies over and over again–even by our University of Texas — as the number one muscle recovery drink of all time!  It tastes SO good and truly helps my muscles recover, and I sleep so well.  I love it!”

14. Varied Workouts

Molly Daniels

Molly Daniels

“I make sure to go to different iGnite workout classes weekly. Yes, I know I work for iGnite, but I feel different when I teach versus when I participate. I am “on” in different ways when I teach than when I take a class. I’m able to step out of my ‘teaching brain’ and simply follow the leader’s instructions. I don’t enjoy working out on my own, and in fact, I don’t do it. I appreciate going to different classes, and I listen to my body when it’s telling me to speed up or slow down.”

15. Self-Guided Yoga

Amy Younkman

Amy Younkman

“I make sure to schedule a weekly yoga session with and for myself.”

16. Cranberry Water

Molly Daniels

Molly Daniels

“I always have a pitcher of the iGnite cranberry water in my fridge! I get bored of drinking plain water, and I enjoy this refreshing drink.”

17. Morning Stretching Ritual

Amy Younkman

Amy Younkman

“Kitchen counter stretching and moving my spine in 6 ways first thing each morning while waiting for my tea to steep helps me continue to feel my best.”

18. A Favorite Eye Cream

Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker

“My eye cream Olay Total Effects 7 in 1 Eye Cream: I am addicted to it and put it on three times a day!  It has a little glisten to it and it so hydrating.  It truly has helped my bags under my eyes go away that I inherited from my sweet Mom — it is awesome stuff, AND is available at the grocery store!”

19. Body Oil

Cary Fyfe

Cary Fyfe

“My go-to for just feeling pretty and well-taken care of is to spray a few drops of my favorite oil — Caudalie Divine Oil — onto my palms, then I rub it behind my ears, under my nose and on my neck. It smells so quietly fresh, and hydrates my skin beautifully. I sometimes rub a little onto the ends of my hair, and, well, it just makes me feel pretty and fresh!”

20. Bike Ride Escape

Amy Younkman

Amy Younkman

“I go for a bike ride and leave any worries or distractions behind me!”


Although all of these habits are unique to each of us, one common habit we all share (in addition to exercise!)  is that all of us rest and recognize that we can’t have one (exercise) without the other (rest)!  No one can perform exercise to their fullest ability without adequate rest.

So, go ahead — pick out one or a few of these habits and test drive them in your own wellness routine!  We hope they iGnite your body, mind and spirit.

Have some great healthy habits and tricks of your own? Please share them with us by leaving a comment below!  We love hearing your feedback and learning from you.

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Member Spotlight: Shelly Hohmann

iGnite - Member SpotlightRoots:
I’m from Richardson, Texas and graduated from J.J. Pearce High School. I was born in Lubbock, moved to Roswell, NM, and then Tulsa, OK, before we got to Richardson in 1969 when I was 7. My parents still live in that same house today!

Family Life:
I am married to my very best friend, David. We met at UT in 1980 and got married in 1983. Our kids are Kyle (28) and Emily (26). Kyle lives here in Austin and is a landscape architect. He is marrying a wonderful girl, Lee Ann, in May 2016. Emily is our world traveler who has lived in London, Nashville, and Los Angeles since graduation. She works in the tv/movie/music industry.

Work Life:
I am a retired elementary principal. I worked in Round Rock ISD for 31 years as a teacher, assistant principal, and principal. I currently serve as a hearing officer and interim principal for the district.

Biggest lesson learned through my iGnite experience:
The biggest lesson I’ve learned through my iGnite experience is that I’m not too old to try new moves!

Who inspires me most is:
My parents! They are both 78 and have always lived full, fun lives. They still look at each day as a gift and are rarely home when I call them. They’re just busy living and thinking of others!

In my free time I like to:
My free time has changed drastically in the last year since I retired. My days are still very full, but they are spent running errands for my busy family members, volunteering in various capacities, exercising, and getting enough sleep for the first time in my adult life. I am surprised to report that I haven’t had a single boring day!

I would describe myself with these three words:
Outgoing, loyal and passionate.

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10-Day Reboot: Kathy’s Day 3

iGnite10DayRebootLogo

by Kathy Huffaker

by Kathy Huffaker

Day 3: Best one yet!

Aspect of the Re-Boot I’m enjoying the most?  I really enjoy the sense of focus that the Re-Boot brings me. I’m focused not only on what I put in my mouth but my exercise, my sleep and general self-care with the body scrubbing and the Epsom salt baths.

The lemon and apple cider vinegar go down easier in a little passion tea!

The lemon and apple cider vinegar go down easier in a little passion tea!

Aspect of the Re-Boot I’m finding the most difficult?  I think the hardest part for me is waking up to the thought of warm lemon water instead of hot coffee with cream!

Quality of last night’s sleep?  My first night’s sleep on the Re-Boot was so short and not very satisfying. However, last night I slept well and woke up refreshed. I think it’s because I made a concerted effort to go to bed earlier and turn off the technology.

Breakfast of Paleo pumpkin muffin and 5 minute Oatmeal Power Bowl (1/2 recipe) with blackberries

Breakfast of Paleo pumpkin muffin and 5 minute Oatmeal Power Bowl (1/2 recipe) with blackberries

Energy level and mood during the day?  Today I felt energized and happy, until I took an Epsom salt bath in the late afternoon. All my energy was gone! Luckily, I was able to just lay down for a few minutes! From now on I will take my baths before bed.

Cravings? As always, I crave sugar! But I have learned from past Re-Boots to be prepared with things like the Peppermint Brownie Bites (from the recipes), dates and flavored dried plums to satisfy the sweet tooth.

Lunch of this wonderful salad from Trader Joes

Lunch of this wonderful salad from Trader Joe’s

Tips that help me: I make a batch of the Detox salad (it makes a ton so share half with a friend!) and Paleo Pumpkin Muffins to have on hand for quick breakfast, snack or lunch when I’m too busy to prepare a whole meal. Both are very satisfying! Being prepared keeps me on track.

Butterflied Herb Chicken Breast, Crispy Mashed Potatoes with Avocado Garlic Aioli and roasted vegetables for dinner. Even my boys liked these recipes!

Butterflied Herb Chicken Breast, Crispy Mashed Potatoes with Avocado Garlic Aioli and roasted vegetables for dinner. Even my boys liked these recipes!

Body Re-boot: Day 1 | by Catherine

logo_daily_journal-01

by Catherine Sanderson

by Catherine Sanderson

photo 1

Breakfast time! 2 eggs, 1/2 avocado & some all natural salsa (no longer wrapped in a corn tortilla)

Ok, day 1!  Since I was really trying to pay attention to how my body felt all day so that I could record it, I can say that I woke up to my alarm very tired and wanting to go back to sleep (as usual), with bags under my eyes and bloated, even my rings are tight… is that normal? Doesn’t sound like the best start to me now that I’m  sharing it out loud :/

I have to say that after my hot lemon water, Re-Boot-friendly breakfast and my first 20 oz. of water, I was feeling very satisfied.  So far, so good, I wasn’t feeling any bit deprived.

photo 2

I met my mom for lunch at my favorite Thundercloud Subs, excited to enjoy my fave gluten-free sandwich in town: gluten-free bun w/turkey, avocado, lots of veggies & peppers, spicy mustard, olive oil & salt & pepper

At one point in the day I messed up and started thumbing through Instagram for a  brain break before I caught myself and quickly logged out of my account on my phone– oh my gosh it’s not even something I do consciously anymore! It’s almost become second nature to mindlessly grab my phone to browse my friends’ photos or get up and get a snack (I’m not even hungry!?) when I need a quick 30 second escape. That was a big realization for me.

I like to think that I only occasionally look at social media (Instagram & Pinterest have definitely become my social media of choice), but in reality I reach for it a number of times a day, when instead I could do something much more rejuvenating for a break, like get up from my desk and step outside for a quick breath of fresh air. That is now my Re-Boot stand-in activity for social media & mindless snacking.

photo 3

I measured my water bottle the night before to find that it holds 20 oz. of water, so my aim is to keep this baby at my desk with me and make sure I finish at least 3 bottles by the end of the day.

photo 4

Worktime snack time! Apple with a tablespoon of all natural, unsweetened peanut butter. Just enough salty & sweet and very filling. It’s also my favorite for pre-workout energy.

Knowing that I needed to make sure I fit in 7-9 hours of sleep after getting home from school past 10pm and then get up early for work really made me much more conscious of planning out my night and responsibilities ahead of time so that I could get to sleep right when I got home. I have to say, I think I need that incentive to be better about planning ahead. It felt really good to be more prepared.

Even at the end a busy work day followed by school in the evening, I realized that I personally felt much more calm and like my mind was moving at a much more pleasantly slow pace — not always jumping from task to to-do-list task and in between busying myself with distractions like social media or TV.  Lesson learned!

photo 5

My on-the-go “kitchen sink” smoothie dinner for running off to school — frozen bananas, frozen blueberries, spinach, all natural unsweetened peanut butter, almond milk and coconut water

Usually when I get home from class my husband and I sit down and watch a TV show together to “wind-down” and spend time together, but I found that not doing that and instead grabbing books and magazines and getting ready for bed was instead so much more of a wind-down. I was relaxed after only a few minutes and easily fell asleep in time to get in over 7 hrs of sleep. Glorious!

I’m interested to see where the rest of the week takes me — it’s not easy, but I’m determined to push through!

What Being a Morning Person Can Do For You

by Molly Daniels

by Molly Daniels

I read an article that I’d like to share this with those of you who attend my 6 am classes regularly as well as those of you who have mentioned you’d like to try them. When I send emails to encourage members to try a 6am class, I really do mean every word I write when I say “It is the best time of day, and you will not regret waking up early!” 
Here’s a great article about how waking up early just might change your life for the better! With that said, I believe sleep is SO important, and if you are going to bed at midnight every night, I do not suggest waking up before the sun. Sleep helps the body to recover and rejuvenate, and you need at least 7 hours! I love getting at least 9 hours of sleep. Every BODY is different, and I know mine requires a lot of sleep. So, listen to your body when it comes to resting! AND, there is NOTHING wrong with a 30 minute nap during the afternoon. It’s actually so good for you!!!
I especially love numbers 1, 9, and 10 that are listed. Checking items off the “to-do” list without any distractions rarely happens for mostly all of us. If we get those things done before we are receiving texts or emails, think about how much more could be done during the afternoon! Also, exercise gives you energy, and if you do it early in the morning, you are setting yourself up for a day full of productiveness.
If you happen to set your alarm for 5am tomorrow morning and want a nice stretch with a beautiful setting to wake up to, please join me at the rowing dock for Core & Stretch at 6. It really is the BEST way to wake up on a Friday morning— peaceful, quiet, and relaxing.
Have a great day, and I hope to see you tomorrow!!
Molly
P.S. I do love to sleep later on the weekends!