Archive of ‘Exercise’ category

Make moves in May

 

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By Chanda Temple

It’s 4 a.m. on the first day of May 2015 and I’m up thinking how will I “Make Moves in May.”

I know I’m not alone. Every time the first of the month rolls around, we promise ourselves that “this is the day I’ll do” this or that for improvement. And by the third day, we’ve fallen back into old habits.

Well, today is M-Day and it’s time to get serious. So for the next 31 days, I’m committing to making moves that will not only change my life but I hope will impact others. I’ll occasionally tweet about my journey and use the hashtag #makemovesinmay.

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Breast cancer survivor Demarish Ruffin-Smith’s story of hope

Demarish Ruffin-Scott with sons Rich, 13, left, and Reese, 9.

Shelby County’s Demarish Ruffin-Smith today with sons Rich, 13, left, and Reese, 9. They were 8 and 4 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009.

By Chanda Temple

Break out the pink. Demarish Ruffin-Smith is celebrating a five-year anniversary today.

She found a lump in her right breast on Aug. 6, 2009 and had a double mastectomy 20 days later. She’s been breast cancer free ever since.

“Most of the time, people are estatic to make it to the five-year mark. Depending on what kind of cancer you have, it can come back,” said Demarish, 43 and a married mother of two sons living in Shelby County, Ala. “I just thank God every day for waking me up.”

Though the lump she found in her right breast was cancer that was in the  early stage and the cancer had not spread to her lymph nodes, she wanted to reduce any chances of the cancer returning. She opted for a double mastectomy.

For Demarish, the decision for a double mastectomy was easy. At the time of the diagnosis, her sons were 4 and 8. She wanted to be around to see them grow up. It was a decision that worked for her. Each woman, she said, has to do what works best for them.

“I know there are many other life-threateing diseases. Some people, unfortunately, will not have my outcome,” she said. “I caught it early because I know my body and lead a healthy lifestyle. My prayer is that no matter what your diagnosis is and what course of action you choose to take, that you become an educated patient.”

“Know your options,” she said. “Decide what’s right for you and put your boxing gloves on every day.”

She offers six breast cancer survivor tips:

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Motivation Monday: 9 weight loss tips to a thinner you

Apples are a good tool in the fight against the flab.  Image by Dustin Bouwhuis via Flickr/CreativeCommons

Apples are a good tool in the fight against the flab.
Image by Dustin Bouwhuis via Flickr/CreativeCommons

By Chanda Temple

For three years, doctors had been telling John Long that he needed to lose weight.

And for three years, John didn’t respond to their comments. “Nobody, friends or family, was telling me I was fat,’’ he said. “For me, being 225 (pounds) and 6’2, I thought I was a good size.’’

But he began to pay attention to what doctors were saying in June 2012 when tests showed his glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol levels were all high. A test had also categorized him as “obese.’’

He was 41 and on the verge of becoming a diabetic.

The medical reports were a lot to digest, but his wake-up call came in July 2012 when one of his college fraternity brothers had a fatal heart attack while playing with his children. The man was only 40 years old.

“Besides the news of his death being devastating, I knew I had to make a change in my life,’’ said John, who pledged Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. at Tuskegee University. “I didn’t want to have all those health issues. That was my extra motivation to go to work.’’

A week or two after his friend’s death, John researched information about diets, exercise and losing weight.

His wife, La’Shara, bought them a YMCA membership. John also did a meatless detox, workouts and other things.

Within six months, he lost 45 pounds.

John, assistant program director for Clear Channel Media and Entertainment in Montgomery, Ala., said he’s only gained back six pounds since losing the weight.

Today, his medical test levels are normal and he’s maintaining his weight. How did he do it? Here are nine of his weight loss secrets.

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Noah Galloway grows from tragedy to compete in Men’s Health magazine contest

By Chanda Temple

Retired Army veteran Noah Galloway, 32, of Alabaster, Ala. is in the running for Men's Health Magazine's Ultimate Guy Search. Online voting ends June 30, 2014.  Image by Jason Maris Photography

Retired Army veteran Noah Galloway, 32, of Alabaster, Ala. is in the running for Men’s Health Magazine’s Ultimate Guy Search. Posing here in a kilt, he’s currently in first place. Online voting ends June 30, 2014.
Image by Jason Maris Photography

Editor’s Note: Noah Galloway won the magazine cover competition in October 2014 and was on the November 2014 cover. In March 2015, he will be one of the contestants on ABC’s ‘Dancing with the Stars.’ The show will debut on Monday, March 16 at 7 p.m. CST.  

In 2010, Noah Galloway took a long hard look at himself and didn’t like what he saw.

It wasn’t that he had lost his left leg and left arm in a 2005 roadside bomb attack while serving in Iraq. (He had already come to terms with that after being mad about it for years.) Instead, he didn’t like how he’d let the tragedy eat away at his very soul.

Once an avid athlete and runner, he was no longer active. He’d allowed what happened to him in the blast, rob him of any desire to work out or even take a walk around the block.

“I had a beer gut,’’ said Galloway, of Alabaster, Ala.

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Motivation Monday: Spinning with Fitness Pro Cherie Fields

Spinning instructors always play the best music in class.  Image by Beverly Cromer via Flickr/CreativeCommons.

Feel the burn and the beat. Spinning instructors always play the best music in class. The experience makes you feel like you can conquer anything. 
Image by Beverly Cromer via Flickr/CreativeCommons.

By Chanda Temple

Sometimes it takes an oldie but goodie memory to push you to keep exercising. I wrote this in July 2011. Publishing for the first time today on #MotivationMonday. 

In 2010, my friend Cherie Fields had just started teaching a spinning class. She was so excited about her new endeavor that she invited her friends to try the class. However, I was reluctant.

Me: “Unh-uh. I’ve tried spinning before. I didn’t like it.”

Cherie: “Well, you haven’t taken my class.”

Me: “Umm, I’ll think about it.”

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Get inspired with fitness guru Donna Richardson Joyner

Donna Richardson Joyner  Image from President's Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition via Flickr/CreativeCommons.

Donna Richardson Joyner
Image from President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition via Flickr/CreativeCommons.

By Chanda Temple

A book I’m reading has been a good motivator to help keep me on track in my quest to work out.

It’s fitness expert Donna Richardson Joyner’s book “Witness to Fitness,’’ which has uplifting affirmations, scriptures, Sweet Tweets, daily meal plans, recipes and exercises for any fitness level.

She finds unique ways to blend faith and fitness to fight the fat.

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Motivation Monday: Fighting to be fit

Lifting weights makes me smile. So happy to have it in my fitness routine.  Image by Barry Miller via Flickr/CreativeCommons.

Lifting weights makes me smile. So happy to have it in my fitness routine.
Image by Barry Miller via Flickr/CreativeCommons.

By Chanda Temple

Every time a new year rolls around, I make promises to lose weight and to exercise more. And every year, I fall back into bad habits.

I work late and eat even later. I’m always cheating with sweets. I seek out new exercise classes, but find it hard to fit them into my schedule.

Excuses. Excuses. Excuses.

After I cancelled another workout session for the umpteenth time earlier this year, my trainer told me: “You are consistent at being inconsistent when it comes to working out.’’

He’s right. I’m a backslider.

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