Tag Archives: go red for women

Self determination

27 Mar

Pink Ink

 

Heart Walk 2013 finish line

Heart Walk 2013 finish line

Heart Month has come and gone! Did it impact you in any way?  What did YOU do to challenge yourself or others to be heart healthy?  It was a tough month, but I made it!

My goal, as motivated by Star Jones, was to do 28 days of fitness!  I mapped out my plan, got a calendar, some weights, saw a trainer and got to work.  It was harder than I expected!  Who wants to exercise for 28 days straight?  Not me!  But I was determined to try.  If Stuart Scott could work out right after chemo, I could at least try!  It got a little complicated when I started getting transfusions…often!  But despite a February of 6 transfusions, and 3 chemo treatments, I finished!

I completed 24 of 28 days of exercise!

It may not seem like a lot, but it required commitment and determination.  There were days that I lifted light weights before being hooked up to a machine.  Other days when I rolled out of bed, walked, then, rolled right back into bed!

Why did I do it?

  • Most times, I felt better after exercising.  Isn’t that what all the doctors tell you will happen?
  • I have metastasized cancer in my lungs.  I need to increase my “lung strength” through exercise.
  • I wanted to set a good example for my daughter, and prove to myself that I could do it.
  • Heart disease KILLS!

The best thing to come out of this, is that I continue to exercise!  However,  I have scaled back my ambition.  I now work toward 5 days a week of exercise. That is still tough!  But the doctors say that is a good goal and possible to maintain.

Just because Heart Month is officially over, doesn’t mean you should go back to old habits!  The 1st part of this month had me in the hospital 3x in 1 week getting transfusions. I was worn out! Over it!  But, this weekend I participated in the local Heart Walk! Determination!  It was great to see FAMILIES walking together. My daughter is in her 3rd week of trying to be a vegetarian! A 10 year old who is willing, albeit begrudgingly, to try new veggies! I couldn’t be happier!

What else can you do?

If you are in the Phoenix area, join me and other Go Red Ambassadors at the 2013 Red Dress Cocktail Party on April 3, 2013.  Check out www.2013reddresscocktailparty.eventbrite.com  for more details.

Not in Arizona? No problem! Contact your local American Heart Association and help us continue to educate others about heart disease.

Or, just eat right, and work out! You can do it!

Remember, it’s an exercise in…SELF determination!

Healthy Living…Cheers!

15 Feb

Pink Ink…

Editor’s note.  This was a post I originally planned for Valentine’s Day.  Unfortunately, I spent the day in the hospital.  But I am back! Happy belated Valentine’s Day!

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So we’ve moved from New Year’s resolutions to Valentine’s Day!  Seems like yesterday we kicked off Heart Month!   But here we are ½ way through the February!  What have you done this month?  Worked out? Gone to a Go Red party? Cut down on sodium?  I hope you have done something!  I am half way through my 28 days of exercise, following the lead of Star Jones. (Twitter tag #hearthealth30) Let me tell you, it is hard!  But I am doing it, and have even engaged my Mini-me.

It’s Valentine’s Day.  But instead of talking about the love of others, I wanted to share some stories of inspiration.  People who decided to love themselves and take heart action!

First I toast Linda, my sorority sister from college! Last year she lost one of her best friends to a heart attack.  The kicker? They were on the phone when it happened.  The phone went silent, and Linda thought she was having a standard “can you hear me now?” moment.  Unfortunately, they found her friend the next day at work, with the phone still in her hand.  The loss of a friend was just the kick in the pants Linda needed.  She has become focused not only on her health, but also on educating others about heart health.  Last weekend she held her 1st Go Red brunch! She spoke about the warning signs and risk factors for stroke and heart attack, and offered blood pressure checks.  Ladies munched on heart healthy food like Greek yogurt and baked oatmeal!  Linda hired a coach to hold her accountable for eating and exercising, and has committed to advocating for women’s health, once a quarter! Great job my friend!

I’ve introduced you to Maria before!  She’s my heart health guru.  But that doesn’t mean it comes easy for her.  Because of family history, she must be vigilant with her health.  So she and her mini me now have a trainer, and they love it!  What started as physical therapy for Maria’s shoulder has turned into weight training.  She has even taking a liking to boxing!  It gets her blood flowing!  As part of her heart month challenge, Maria got her family to change their diet.  Maria is a pescatarian, while her Mini-me and hubby have gone all the way vegan! An 11 year old who is excited to go Vegan!  So far so good!  We’ll get an update from her at the end of the month. I love that she is giving her daughter the GIFT of a healthy lifestyle.

Finally, I lift a chocolate strawberry to…my hubby!  He has a family history of high blood pressure, and has been on meds for about 10 years.  He’s an active guy, but has a high stress job…and a wife who has cancer!  So it’s been a challenge to get his pressure under control.  But Life in the Cancer Lane has shown him that we are not promised health.  So he decided to take it to the next level.  B decided to go vegan in November after watching “Forks over Knives”, at the suggestion of his doctor.  This is a man who LOVED meat!  LOVES to cook.  But he was focused and determined. Four months later, and his blood pressure has improved so much that his doctor is considering taking him off meds in the next few months! As a side bonus, he has also lost 15 pounds.  Another example of someone taking charge of his or her heart health.

There are countless other stories of people who have taken control of their health and learned to love themselves in a different way.  As I check off days on my heart health fitness calendar, I remind myself that with each exercise I am hopefully giving myself the gift of health.  What’s a better gift than health to receive on Valentine’s Day?

So today, I celebrate the love of…healthy living!

Cheers!

Cheers!

Cheers!

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Heart Healthy

31 Jan

Pink Ink…

Tomorrow is National Wear Red Day!  It is also the 1st day of Heart Month.  You may be wondering why you should care.  The simple answer is that it will affect someone you know.  Period.

Heart disease is the number one killer of women.  It kills more women than breast cancer.

But, you can reduce your chance of getting heart disease!

  • Don’t Smoke! (Yes, people still smoke!  Why??)
  • Exercise: Try and do at least 30 minutes of exercise, 5 days a week.
  • Cut down your salt intake.  Most people don’t need more than a teaspoon of salt a day!
  • Monitor your blood sugar and blood pressure.
  • Find a way to ease stress!
  • Get a good night’s sleep!

At the end of the day, the best piece of advice is to take ACTIVE care of yourself.

Take the next 28 days and commit to learning more about YOUR heart!

Not sure how to kick off your day in a heart healthy way?  Try eating oatmeal!  Or, this easy fruit smoothie!  It’s right around 200 calories and serves 3-4.

Ingredients:

1 cup of mango or peach

1 banana

2 cups of mixed berries

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

8 ounces of orange, pineapple or apple juice

1 tablespoon of coconut flakes

Blend all the ingredients together until smooth.

smoothie

My family starts each day with a smoothie.  We alternate with different fruits and sometimes switch up the juices.  Unsweetened juice is better to cut down on sugar and calories!  Costco and Sam’s Club have the larger frozen fruit bags, so you don’t have to worry about spoiled fruit.  Just make sure the fruit isn’t artificially sweetened.  Try adding Greek yogurt, or a tablespoon of peanut butter for protein.  Trust me.  You can’t taste it.  Experiment.  Get the kids involved!  Have a smoothie challenge!

My hubby always says you can do anything for a month.  Let’s put that to the test.

Join me in February, as we get…Heart Healthy!

Save the Date

17 Jan

Pink Ink…

Can you believe that we are already 1/2 way through January? I cannot!  Every time I turn on the TV, every time I look at Twitter, every time I open a January issue of a magazine, I see something about “2013 resolutions”.

Are you looking for a 2013 “resolution”? One that will actually “stick”? Are you looking to do something that will change your life for the better?  Well here is my suggestion.

Go Red!IMG_0231

That’s right!  Go Red!  Get Heart Healthy!  It is more than a resolution.  It is a lifestyle choice!  Being heart healthy can save your life.  Did you know that:

  • Heart Disease kills more women than all the “cancers” combined.
  • Cardiovascular disease is the most common cause of death in the US.
  • There are 3 hearts attacks per minute.
  • More women die of heart disease than men every year.

So how do you get started?

  • Check out websites like http://www.goredforwomen.org or http://www.heart.org.  These websites are great tools for learning more about heart disease, as well as providing advice on creating new habits.
  • Control your risk factors!  Stop smoking, cut down on alcohol, walk 10k steps a day!  Just get up and move!
  • Learn your family history.
  • Participate in Wear Red Day™!

Friday, February 1, 2013 is the 10th anniversary of Wear Red Day™.  On  this day, millions of people across the country who are committed to fighting this deadly disease break out the red! Some, like Star Jones, wear red for 28 days!  While there have been great strides in awareness, there is still much work to be done. People still need to learn to love their hearts!  Let that be your 1st step in being heart healthy! Love your heart.  You only get one.

February is National Heart Month recognizing the impact heart disease has on millions of Americans each year.  The month is usually marked by various walks, lectures, and parties designed to raise awareness.  Check out your local American Heart Association™ chapters for what is going on in your neck of the woods.  Sign up to become a “heart ambassador”!

So break out your fave piece of red clothing and stand with us as we build awareness.  Remember, more important than the clothing, is the “resolution” to be healthy.  Check back in February for some fun heart healthy recipes, a guest blog or two, and some fun pictures, all in honor of Heart Month!

Remember to…Save the Date!

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