Turino Fitness

Because it's all connected.


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Smiling is better than CHOCOLATE

Smiling is better than Chocolate I said…

“What? Impossible” The response of my daughter to this statement.

But when it comes to our brain’s response, smiling wins out. It creates a powerful loop in that the brain recognizes as HAPPINESS and PLEASURE. This positive feedback loop reinforces feelings of JOY.

Even fake smiles trigger the same loop. So when you’re in traffic, frustrated, irritated, annoyed – try smiling. And hold it. (The yoga instructor in me wants you to add some diaphragmatic breaths too.)

Here’s a FB Live I did on it.

Want to learn some more tools? Join my 10 Days of JOY Challenge. It starts on 8/20. Totally free.

Namaste,
Sarah


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3 Tools to Cultivate JOY

As someone who has been depressed, I know the feeling of depression intimately. I also know that when it lifts – that depression is not my natural state. Joy is my natural state.

Copy of Copy of Copy of The art of being happy lies in the power of extracting happiness from common things. – Henry Ward Beecher

So I started to ask what can I do to support my own JOY? There is a ton of research around the topic of cultivating joy. I really enjoy the work of researcher Emma Seppala who wrote an article in Psychology Today about sharing your joy. I break down the article here:

VLOG – The Power of Sharing your JOY with others

The thing to add into your life to cultivate joy is to SHARE YOUR JOY WITH OTHERS. Here’s are three ways I do this:
1) Three Things and Hi/Lo at the family dinner table. Come together and share 3 things that happened throughout your day. Then one highpoint and then one lowpoint.
2) Gratitude Journal. At the end of your day, bullet point 3-5 things that happened during your day.
3) Share your positive experiences of your day with a trusted person. Want to learn more? Join my free 10 Days of JOY Challenge – SIGN UP HERE. Each day for 10 days a challenge will be sent to your inbox that will help cultivate joy. 🙂

Namaste, Sarah


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Choose JOY

Let’s climb in the ‘way-back machine’ ok? A long time ago I was dating this guy…and, he was a really negative person. Really half-empty. Everything he saw was the world being out to get him. He was constantly the victim of the world, his employers, his circumstances.

I felt like it was my responsibility to fix everything and make his world better. But it wasn’t my job.

Circumstances and people cannot create your joy…YOU create your joy.

Because here’s the cold, hard truth and here is what I told him in the end.

Joy is a choice…choose joy.

We were inherently different people, but what I saw was a world full of loving and smiling people. What he saw was a scary world full of dumb, annoying people. What I saw were simple pleasures and I hung out in the place of gratitude. What he saw was that everyone/thing was out to get/bother/annoy him and doing anything was an uphill effort.

What was the difference between us?

How we look at the world.

That’s it.

The world is like a piece of broccoli (lesson from a great article called “Be the Broccoli” that I can’t find to attribute.) You can look at a piece of broccoli and think it looks delicious, nutritious, and wonderful. OR you can look at it and think it looks disgusting. In the end…the piece of broccoli itself doesn’t change. It’s still just a piece of broccoli. The difference is in your perception.

Joy is a choice. Ultimately, how you perceive the world is your choice.

And you can do some things that set the stage for more and more and more JOY. To cultivate joy. The more you practice these tools, the more you start fertilizing your garden with stuff that makes joy grow.

Want to learn more? Join the 10 Days of Joy Challenge. It’s free and it will teach you some tools to bring joy into your life more and more and more.

How it works. You sign up here. As soon as you sign up – you’ll get a challenge sent to your mailbox every day starting on August 20. All of the challenges are really easy and based in the science of JOY.

Namaste, S
You can get more actionable tools and information over on my Facebook page where we’ll be talking about the science of joy this week.
#10daysofjoy #choosejoy


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Joy is a Choice.

No really, Joy is a CHOICE.  How you look at things is up to you.  You can’t control the circumstances, but you sure can control how you react and feel about them.

When my kids were little, I’d envy the array of emotional storms that would pass over them within the course of an hour.  HAPPY, MAD, SAD, EXCITED, CONTENT…and on and on and on.  Like little thundershowers, the feelings would come and they would go.  To this day, they still don’t hold grudges, they don’t stay mad, they let the feelings come and then pass on through.

I heard a preacher once who said, “They’re just feelings – they come and they go.  Don’t get too locked down on them because then the feelings control you.”

It’s hard though isn’t it?  When someone hurts you, disappoints you, frustrates you, angers you…to just, feel the pain – and let it go.

Somewhere along the way, instead of letting the feelings pass through, we started allowing the feelings to linger and turn into resentment.

Hm.

Here’s what I think about the sticky icky resentment – it’s not a feeling.  It’s a choice.  And when you choose resentment, you’re holding on to the ick.  You’re allowing the feeling to stick and fester.  And that ick isn’t good for your health.

Conversely, you could feel it – and let it pass through.

There’s a great story in Jon Muth’s “Zen Shorts” about an old monk who was treated very rudely by a woman on the road.  The rest of the journey his travelmate stews about how awfully the old monk was treated.  When he brings it up at the end of the day, he expresses his outrage, “That woman back there was so rude. You picked her up, carried her on your back, and she didn’t even thank you.” To which the older monk replied, “I set the woman down hours ago. Why are you still carrying her?”

I loved this illustration.

You get to choose what goes on up in your noggin.  You have control over what goes on in your brain.  I’m not saying don’t have feelings.  Everybody has feelings.  But then, it’s your choice to let it pass.

And you can be PROACTIVE about joy.  Seek it out!  Make it a practice!  There was a guy I kind of dug in college who put it best, “Wake up laughing.  It sets the tone for your whole day.”

What if we did that?  What if we woke up laughing?  What if we CHOSE JOY.  Every day.

We’d be happier.  We’d be healthier.  Inside and outside.

Today – choose joy.  Choose to not let the circumstances of life push you off of that lovely center.  Stay in it.   Have a joy-filled day.

Peace.  Love.  Joy.

Sarah

 

 


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It’s all going south.

I like it when three completely different things present themselves to you as gifts from the Universe and they all illustrate the same thing in different ways.

First thing – A conversation with my neighbor Joan. We were talking about our parents getting older and how difficult that is for us to see. For each of us the takeaway was to MOVE AS MUCH AS WE CAN, WHILE WE CAN.

Second thing – I’m at the gym in the changing room and the beautiful women of the Water Aerobics are drying off and naked. And most of them are senior citizens. They are laughing and seemingly at home and content in their bodies. They are beautiful. They are fit. I admire them. I want to be like them when I grow up.

Third thing – a woman came to my class. Lovely, strong, full of life. She is living with Multiple Sclerosis. And when I asked the class to run down a hill, she wept. She wept because she used to be able to run down hills, and now she can’t. Now, with a determined look on her face, she concentrates on her balance and she walks down that hill. This woman was a runner, a mountain climber, a MOVER. She grieves the loss of ability in her body, and yet pushes herself to do her very best in what she CAN do.

We spend a lot of energy….wait, no, we WASTE a lot of energy disliking our bodies and wishing that they were different. So much energy wasted despising, wishing, working, coveting, loathing….

And here’s the deal people. It’s all going south. For each and every one of us eventually….it’s all going south. Eventually the skin sags around the muscle and things loosen up. Unless you are going to get a body lift (is there even such a thing?) it’s coming for all of us…

So when are we going to love ourselves? Love this shell that we’ve been given that holds our beautiful selves? Take care of it, move it, stretch it…but moreover – be grateful that we CAN do what we do.

If we take a wider view of our beautiful selves…not so myopic on our bellies, butts, jiggly arms, sagging jowels and zoomed out a bit. Maybe we could see how lovely we are as a whole. How nice it is to be right where we are…right here, right now.

Love the body you’re in. It’s part of wellness. Let go of the blaming, shaming, self-disgust, frustration. Embrace love, admiration, celebration and delight.

Please. And please stop letting marketing and sales geniuses define what beautiful is. It’s crap. Healthy? Yes. Eating well because it contributes to your wellness? Yes. Moving because it makes you feel good inside and out? Yes. But dieting yourself into submission because people say that’s what size you ‘should’ be? No. Working out obsessively because you want to look like xyz? No.

It’s all going south people.

Until then. Love your beautiful selves. Be grateful. Delight in yourself. Focus on health and wellness. Spread love around to others….and to yourself.

Peace,
Sarah


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The House with Four Rooms

Take a ride if you will with me in the wayyyback machine – back to 1988. AAAAHHH! I was in college and besides having larger than normal hair, I was balancing 3-4 jobs, going to school full time and… searching for something.

It took me a good 25 years to find it, but what happened on a particular day in 1988 stuck with me.

I lived in a house with many young women and, as you can imagine, there were many boys coming and going from this house.

One of these boys, threw me a lifechanger.

I was 19 years old, and he threw me something that has hung with me for all this time. I don’t remember who he was, or if he was there with me or a roommate. I don’t remember his name or any details except for what he told me.

What he said was, “Sarah – a human is like a house made up of four rooms. Physical. Emotional. Intellectual. Spiritual. And those rooms must be aired out each day.”

Umm….. YES. YES. YES.

Yes.

We are like houses made up of four rooms:

Physical – Get out and move your body in a way that pleases you each day. Delight in the complex, amazing, beautiful you. Stretch. Walk. Hug. Move.

Emotional – Share of your beautiful self with others and open yourself to receiving the gift of others. Share air. Share thoughts. Share time. Share your gifts. Love freely.

Intellectual – Read things that challenge you, inspire you, teach you. Try new things. Go new places. Learn about different people, different cultures. Travel. Eat different food. Talk to people about things that make you think. Ask questions. Be a lifelong learner.

Spiritual – Connect with the Divine in a way that makes sense to you and resonates with you. Feel the deep connection with each other and with the collective. Open yourself up to the big mystery – LOVE. Quiet your mind so that you can feel it, hear it, and be one with it.

And all of these rooms need to be opened up and aired out every day. For balance. For harmony. For connection. For wholeness.

So – dear, sweet boy whose face I don’t remember, name I don’t remember, reason we were having this deep conversation in my rental house on Wright St. in Marquette, Michigan circa 1988 that I don’t remember…

Thank you. Thank you for teaching me something that I’ve tried to honor as best as I could, all of my life. I hope others will benefit from your wisdom as much as I did.

Peace,
Sarah


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The Happiness Project

“Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions.”
—-Dalai Lama

Happiness. There was a great article in one of my continuing ed journals about how Happiness isn’t something that just happens…you have to HELP make it happen. You have to till the garden, fertilize the soil, water the happy plants. Here were some of their thoughts on happy garden work and what research has shown what happy people do: – devote a great amount of time to nurturing and enjoying relationships. – are comfortable expressing gratitude to others. – are optimistic about their futures. – savor life’s pleasures and try to live in the present moment. – make physical exercise a weekly and daily habit. – are committed to lifelong goals and ambitions. – have stresses and even tragedies, but are able to cope in the face of challenges. Happiness is a practice. Grab hold of it and tend your garden:)

Here are 12 researched strategies for sustainable happiness courtesy of “The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want” by Sonja Lyubomirsky:

1. Count your blessings. Express gratitude for what you have.
2. Cultivate optimism. Keep a journal and write about the best possible future for yourself.
3. Avoid overthinking and social comparison. Minimize dwelling on problems and comparing yourself to others.
4. Practice acts of kindness for friends or strangers.
5. Develop nurturing relationships.
6. Do more activities that truly engage you – activities in which you “lose” yourself.
7. Replay and savor life’s joys.
8. Commit to your goals. Design them and pursue them.
9. Develop strategies for coping with stress, hardship or trauma.
10. Learn to forgive. Keep a journal or write a letter to let go of anger and resentment.
11. Practice religion and spirituality.
12. Take care of your body by engaging in phsycial activity, meditating, smiling and laughing.

Peace.Love.JOY. 🙂