Walk Your Way to Peace


Sticking to a new diet or exercise routine is challenging – especially when beginning. We’ll need to call into service our army reserves – willpower and self-discipline. If we have not been developing these two mandatory elements then experiencing success will be challenging at best.

Research and ongoing studies have proven over and over the positive effects that meditation provides us in regards to developing strong mind control, self-discipline and willpower.  It improves memory, is a super anti-aging strategy and the perfect way to tune into your body and listen to what it is telling you.

Meditation offers a world of benefits and can be done by anyone. Focus, memory, attention span and age-related cognitive decline all benefit from the practice of meditation. You could even think of it as a natural form of medication for the brain.

With today’s hectic schedules and increasing demands, finding “quiet” time to meditate can sometimes be challenging and opens the door to our “favored” excuse. However if meditation is worked into daily activities then it’s easy to participate without exception.

Explore Walking Meditation

The activity of walking itself has proven therapeutic and hence the popularity of walking meditation.

Usually done in a quiet environment without disturbance, traditional type sitting meditation can be expanded to include “walking meditation.” Walking meditation is simply a form of “meditation in action.” Because nearly everyone does some form of walking daily, it is the perfect opportunity to turn a common everyday activity into a meditative practice offering health and longevity benefits.

Walking meditation is nothing new. It has been an essential part of Buddhist training for centuries. Monks will walk for hours in order to develop focus and high levels of concentration. It is an invigorating activity and when emotions are strong and stress sets in, walking meditations can be more relaxing than sitting meditation.

When performing “walking meditation,” we employ the physical, mental and emotional experiences of walking as the basis for developing greater awareness. And, because the body is moving, it is easier to stay anchored in the present moment and remain aware of bodily sensations and many people find it easier to perform than sitting meditation.

When performing sitting meditation, the sensations that arise in the body are much more subtle and harder to pay attention to that those that arise while we are actively walking. This makes walking meditation a highly pleasurable experience and we all know the healthy role that “pleasure” plays when trying to develop a new habit.

Unlike sitting meditation, walking meditation is obviously done with the eyes open and body moving. It is the perfect solution to squeezing more meditation time into the day because you can take advantage of all the times you walk. Each spell of walking throughout your day, no matter how short or long in duration can be turned into valuable meditative practice time.

Here’s a few important key elements for experiencing success with walking meditation:

Be aware. Before beginning a “walking meditation” feel your weight being transferred into the earth on the spot you are standing. Spend a minute or two just standing there, focus on your breathing and get your attention focused on your body and the sensations you are feeling.

Slow is better. Walking meditation is usually done at a slower pace than normal walking and coordinates with breathing. Keep your pace steady and even. Walk very slowly until you can stay focused in the present moment with every step you take.

Spend at least 15 minutes moving. Since there is no discomfort associated with walking mediation, (as there sometimes is with sitting meditation) you should be able to perform it for longer periods of time.

Choose your place wisely. Don’t perform your walking meditation in high traffic areas or heavily populated areas. You want to feel safe from beginning to end. Choose a path that is slightly enclosed so there is less distraction for you and your mind can more easily travel inwards without fear.

Control your thoughts. Whenever your mind begins to engage in mental thoughts about your surroundings, simply bring it back to your walking pace and follow your breathing and bodily sensations.

Remain centered: There is nowhere to go in thought. It’s a matter of mastering your attention, focus and presence. Simply BE the process as it unfolds.

As an added bonus, walking meditation can actually build stamina and strength as well as allowing a quiet, focused mind to become an integral part of your life, whether you are walking to work, in your neighborhood after dinner, or walking for fitness.

It makes good sense to achieve two things with a single action – quieting your mind as you improve your health.

* Everything you need to know to slow down and even reverse the aging clock can be found in my anti-aging library of help: 

“Reclaim Your Longevity.”

For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit:

Carolyn Hansen Fitness

Your Social Life Affects Your Rate of Aging…

It may seem odd at first to be talking about relationships when it comes to anti-aging. But it turns out that relationships – marriage, friendships and siblings have everything to do with your “rate of aging.”

The search for the elusive “fountain of youth” is not all about just looking younger or being younger from a physical standpoint. How you feel is equally important and social interaction with people plays a major role in keeping that aspect of you “healthy.” 

Social interaction is key. It is the arena that allows people to express their feelings and share their issues with others. It has even been proven to have a direct effect on the immune system and a person’s well-being.

Conversely, those with few social relationships tend to draw inward, keeping to themselves, leading to the loss of “social functioning” and if not corrected contributes to depression. Although the ability to communicate with others is not lost, the natural flow is disturbed and they’ll  likely lose touch with overall social norms and their ability to relate to others suffers.

All of these factors contribute to the aging process.

Boost Your Immunity

On the other hand, those who foster strong social ties, fit easy into society.

They are healthier both physically and mentally, more outgoing in nature and feel more positive about what they have going for them. Their active social interaction helps to keep their minds healthy and open to exciting new and expanded possibilities and ideas. In the end, they are more content and maintain a healthier outlook on life.

When facing a health crisis or any other crisis in life, no one likes to feel alone. Whether young or old, when we experience struggle, it’s very helpful to have a close circle of family and friends supporting you and standing by your side. Because there is “strength in numbers,” it’s much more comforting to feel part of something bigger and healthy relationships and social interactions provide protective effects against aging because they offer just that – great social support.

This circle of close relationships, people you love and care about beside you, will positively influence your mental outlook and improve your resilience, all contributing factors to your longevity.

Social support is both powerful and empowering. It helps us to cope with stress, whereas lonely people experience the opposite. They suffer  from stress, depression and cardiovascular problems.

Think about this: studies that have been published in the Harvard health newsletter show that men who enjoy a satisfying marriage tend to show a lower rate of mortality than their single counterparts. You can’t ignore these numbers. It pays to have strong social ties, especially as we get older and are more at risk of facing health related issues.

Social life is one of our best immunity builders and increased social interaction/connections promote longevity and vitality by reducing the risk of hypertension, heart disease, some cancers and even infectious diseases. Simply developing and maintaining a few strong relationships (it doesn’t take many) provides some serious protective factors against disease, depression and in general, the process of aging. 

Unfortunately because life moves so fast these days, many current older generationals are quickly losing touch with some of the new social trends and advancements of the future. They are stuck in their narrow ways and cannot adapt to new ways of communicating and interacting.

In order to “feel” young you must remain flexible and social interaction helps to do just that. The opposite is “rigid.” Which one do you think is more likely to “break or crack?”

The reality is, social interaction is a big part of life and when you can no longer participate properly, it impacts you in a negative way whether you like it or not. It takes time and effort to develop and maintain healthy relationships, but the rewards are well worth it.

The good news is, there’s no shortage of places to gain social interaction, boost your self-esteem, kick in your health and turn on your anti-aging genes. Your local gym is one of them – you’ll mingle with a health conscious crowd. Everyone is there because they want to look, feel and perform better. The energy is uplifting, stimulating, educating, intoxicating and for some even addicting, it’s that good.

Next time you’re looking for some healthy social interaction, head to your local gym and enjoy the positive energy.

Your mental and physical health will thank you for it.

The body is empowered to slow down the aging process and restore itself to a level of wellness that it may no longer be experiencing. Superior health. the kind that pays off long-term, involves maintaining healthy social connections, a healthy body weight throughout life, eating a healthy diet, and having sufficient physical activity in our lives.

The information here, when implemented as suggested, will be life changing and you will enjoy greater health like never before.

“Reclaim Your Longevity” can help you do just that…

For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit:

Carolyn Hansen Fitness

Add Years to Your Life and Life to Your Years

With advancing age, comes change and we’re all subject to it. However, the changes that occur are either accelerated or stalled depending on our actions.

Truth is, whatever we continually put into play mentally and physically becomes our world…including our health – the foundation of all other things.

If our lives have been sedentary for the most part, then aging means weight gain, lost muscle mass and suffering with aches and pains – all the result of being out of shape.

If we have not cared for our body physically, then our diet has likely suffered through the years too. A sedentary lifestyle coupled with poor nutrition is a formula for the early onset of disease and “age acceleration.”

Wearing glasses and hearing aids and engaging in cosmetic surgical procedures as well as dying one’s hair are all popular and effective methods of adapting to some of the “effects” of aging. However, they only ease the effects and do nothing to stop the aging process itself.

Without a doubt, the most effective thing that can be done to “reverse the aging process” is to engage in regular strength training exercise.

Muscles are the engines of our body where energy is released, power is produced and movement originates. Because the condition of our engine has a lot to do with the way we look, feel and function, strong muscles are very advantageous and the only way to get strong muscles is to use them.

Muscle mass is mandatory for healthy living and longevity. Period. End of story.

The reality is, you and I (and everyone else) have been losing muscle and gaining fat every day since sometime in our twenties. Studies reveal that most of this muscle loss is due to the fact that we’ve stopped doing active things that require muscle power – not because we age.  This gradual loss of muscle mass starts a vicious cycle as it weakens the entire body. The immune system, nerve cells, hormones and other chemicals are all negatively affected.

The reality is, if you are not building muscle, then you’re losing it.

If your body is not receiving the necessary stimulus to trigger muscle growth, a slow process of muscle atrophy or wasting begins. This loss of muscle tissue directly or indirectly causes the degenerative processes and conditions that characterize the aging process.

In other words, lack of movement is devastating to the human body.

Strength Training is Key

 

Since most of us are employed in jobs that don’t require maximum use of our muscles, and our survival no longer demands intense physical activity as it once did (you know, when we were chasing our food for dinner!), we need to create avenues that actively engage and put them to use. Strength training is the answer.

Only strength training is empowered to prevent age-related muscle loss. No other form of exercise or physical activity is adequate. Strength training is not only the most effective exercise in addressing the bio-markers that effect how young we look, but more importantly, how young we feel. It is empowered to reverse many components of the aging process and is probably the single most effective way to lengthen life.

Although aerobic activity helps your heart (the most effective fitness programs consist of strengthening component and a cardiovascular component), they alone fail to stop muscle loss. Just being “active” is not enough either. Becoming stronger is key. It’s what helps you remain active for your entire life.

Strength training makes you stronger and improves the quality of your life no matter when you begin.

Even if you are currently enjoying your nineties, strength training can add valuable, active years to your life.  In fact, six months of proper strength training has the power to turn back one of the body’s molecular clocks and rejuvenate aging muscles to the extent that they are nearly as powerful as those found in someone much younger.

If you’ve been searching for the perfect anti-aging pill, search no more. Proper strength training exercise can rejuvenate and take years off your chronological age the natural way.  In other words, proper exercise adds years to your life and life to your years. It does not matter if you are a 40-year-old runner or 75-year-old retiree when you begin.

Bottom line is this – Strength is not a luxury as we age. Increasing strength is now a proven way to make the aging process turn around at the genetic level within the cell. It is an absolute necessity for longevity and health. Strong muscles lead to strong bones and increased bone mineral density.

Those that age well and seem younger than their years, retain their lean tissue mass and have a longer life, fewer illnesses and better mental functioning.

The right exercise program will increase your lean muscle mass, and your metabolic rate – burning more calories and producing more energy. This is the real secret to turning back the aging clock.

From the top of your head to the bottom of your toes, being physically active is the stimulus that gets the human body working its best while preventing it from deteriorating. Strength training is key.

If you fail to challenge your joints and muscles to stay strong they will continue to weaken and fail.

Everything you need to know to slow down and even reverse the aging clock can be found in my anti-aging library of help: “Reclaim Your Longevity.”

For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit:

Carolyn Hansen Fitness

Count Nutrients Not Calories

Every day of our lives our body requires a combination of many nutrients in order to function properly and stay alive.

These nutrients include the main macro-nutrients: proteins, carbohydrates, and dietary fats along with micro-nutrients such as vitamins and minerals.

Most people can get the majority of their nutritional needs by paying attention to their diets.

However, how do those that have adopted a low calorie crash diet (thinking that is the key to get them to their desired weight quickly), expect to fulfill these nutritional requirements?

Truth is, crash diets are a set up for serious nutritional deficiencies. And, while some supplements can help to prevent certain nutritional deficiencies they will never be as effective as those from Mother Nature herself and the foods consumed. In addition, when counting on supplements to fill the void, you will be missing out on other important things that food provides us, such as fiber.

What good is it to get to your desired weight by using extreme measures if in the end they only cause a greater risk of long term health problems that can possibly impact you for years down the road? It’s simply not a good trade-off.

Is dropping 5 pounds within one week really worth risking damage to your health? You know the answer to that. Nothing is worth sacrificing your health over.

Eliminating or avoiding certain healthy foods in order to reach a certain weight quickly or opting for low grade foods is like putting low grade fuel into your car or no fuel at all and expecting it to run at peak performance.

Your car cannot run and work properly without good fuel and neither can your body.

The most detrimental issue you will suffer from when adopting a crash diet is setting yourself up to lose lean muscle mass.

Muscle is highly metabolically active – it’s muscle mass that strokes your metabolic engine. Low calorie diets significantly slow down your metabolic rate because your body is not interested in getting skinny (that’s something that your mind is attached to)…its focus is staying alive and healthy.

Losing muscle mass makes maintaining weight loss harder down the road because the more muscle mass you have the more calories you burn on a day to day basis. If there is one tissue that you absolutely do not want to lose…it’s your lean muscle mass.

The more muscle mass lost, the less firm and fit you’ll look, eventually leading to “skinny fat” syndrome. You may look thin but your body composition is far less than ideal, sporting a higher amount of fat mass but a very low amount of muscle mass.

Hormones and Energy

Your body is smart, give it a little credit. When it senses that there is a shortage of fuel coming, it will immediately begin the process of conserving the fuel that is already there. So, rather than burn 1400 calories in order to maintain basic life functions (just keeping your body running) it slows things down, eliminating what’s not absolutely needed for survival, so that you are now burning only 1100 calories in order to keep you alive.

The problem is, now you have to consume 300 fewer calories each day just to maintain your weight, never mind experiencing any weight loss.

As your body starts slowing your metabolic rate down other processes that are not necessary for survival start to shut down as well.

Reproduction is an energy drain that you don’t need so it suffers. Your libido levels plummet as well. And that’s just the short list. How do you expect to experience optimal health if your natural body functions are shutting down?

Finally, low calorie diets turn into a hormonal nightmares as they impact nearly every hormone in the body from serotonin which is our “feel happy, mood happy” hormone to testosterone which improves our ability to stay lean and keeps our sexual drive where it needs to be.

And serotonin is not the only hormone negatively affected. Insulin, cortisol and ghrelin (among others) are all effected by these crash diet tactics. Since hormones are master controllers of every function in our bodies – they literally effect emotional, mental and physical health. Is it really worth the short term risk to mess with them?

Low calorie crash diets are not only dangerous to your health, they are nearly impossible to stick with. Trying to stay satisfied and fend off hunger is virtually mission impossible when your body screams at you to give in.  No one is determined enough to combat the defenses of their body when it is crying out for food. When it wants to eat badly enough…you will be eating before long.

When you do finally give in, it will likely be the first thing that is within your reach and in most cases, it won’t be something that contributes to your health.

Give up counting calories along with extreme, crash diets. Counting calories is not the answer. Counting nutrients is.

Everything you need to know to slow down and even reverse the aging clock can be found in my anti-aging library of help: “Reclaim Your Longevity.”

For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit:

Carolyn Hansen Fitness

Make Fitness a Priority

It’s no secret that maintaining an active lifestyle is mandatory if we want to stay fit and healthy, mentally and physically. However, in a world full of time consuming demands, finding time to get our workouts in can be challenging.

Sadly, with work, family and school activities quickly filling our schedules, if we don’t make exercise a priority, it’s too easily one of the first things “dismissed.”

Funny that we allow life’s demands to get in the way of staying healthy, isn’t it? Shouldn’t it be the other way around? Shouldn’t we be working hard to stay healthy to succeed with life’s demands?

The reality is – although we struggle to find time in our super busy 24-hour day, we can’t afford “not to exercise.” Our health and ultimately our success depend on it.

Next time you’re tempted to shove your workout routine to the bottom of your priority list, ask yourself one question – “what’s going to happen in the years down the road if I continue to live a sedentary lifestyle?” “What’s going to happen to my body if I don’t exercise?”

If you are totally honest with yourself, you will soon realize that you are only exchanging time saved now for time spent on multiple doctors’ appointments, clinic visits and hospital stays in the future. Is that really the road you want to travel?

If health is really a priority in your life, then exercise will be also. From this perspective, finding time to work out will become more of a creative challenge than exercising a “flimsy excuse.”


Here’s a few creative ways to find/make time for fitness:


Plan ahead –

Whenever you put your schedule together, whether its weekly or monthly, make your work-out routine as important as your Doctor visits and other demanding appointments, because it is. The chances of you following through are much greater if it’s scheduled into your calendar of appointments. When you view your calendar daily, you’ll form a mental image which helps you to stay motivated.

Honor Yourself –

If you ever hope to succeed long-term with your exercise goals, you must be “true to yourself.” Don’t force yourself into routines you don’t enjoy doing. All that does is cause a lot of anxiety and dislike and opens the doors to all types of excuses, especially the “I don’t have time” excuse. Analyze your own lifestyle and personality and experiment with different forms and times. Choose something that fits your personality, schedules and taste. If you’re in it for the long-term (and you should be) then you must enjoy doing it.  Find what works best for you and do it.

Learn to delegate –

Every menial task we perform daily eats a small amount of time. But added together all these menial tasks take up a chunk of time. You must lighten the load and eliminate tasks that don’t demand your personal touch. Delegating can be hard, especially for control freaks. However, learning to let go of things that can be done less often or that don’t need doing at all opens a window of exercising opportunity. It’s all about prioritizing and eliminating the “time stealers.”

Family affair –

Don’t use the family as an excuse not to exercise. Use them as your motivation. Schedule fun, challenging family activities such as day hikes, bike rides or even family trips to the local gym. Not only does everyone benefit physically and mentally, but when your children notice how important exercise is to you…it becomes important to them. A very healthy cycle to nurture!

Make the most of your mornings –

Mornings are the least demanding time for most of us. As we get deeper into our days, daily demands become louder and more insistent. It’s best to make your exercise routine “the way you start your day.” It kicks in your “feel-good endorphins,” and sharpens you mentally and physically. It gives you that boost of self-confidence needed to face the demands of the day.

Limit screen time –

Yep, that’s all screen time. TV, computer, iPad, smart phones. If you’ve never actually logged your screen time, its time you did. Most likely you’ll be surprised to find out how much time is spent aimlessly staring at a backlit screen. You don’t need to cut it out…you need to limit it.

Bottom line is this – Every one of us is allotted the same amount of time daily – 24 hours. It’s what we do with that time that determines the quality of life we experience now and in our future.

There’s always time to exercise when exercise is a priority – the real question is “are you ready to get moving?”

Being physically active is the stimulus that gets the human body working its best while preventing it from deteriorating.

If you fail to challenge your joints and muscles to stay strong they will continue to weaken and fail.

* Everything you need to know to slow down and even reverse the aging clock can be found in my anti-aging library of help: 

“Reclaim Your Longevity.”

For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit:

Carolyn Hansen Fitness

Increased Muscle Strength Improves Cognitive Performance

Exercise has proven to be very effective in reducing stress and anxiety levels by increasing soothing brain chemicals like endorphin’s and GABA (Gamma-aminobutyric acid, or GABA, is a neurotransmitter that sends chemical messages through the brain and the nervous system, and is involved in regulating communication between brain cells).

It even benefits us at a cellular level to reverse the toll of stress in our aging bodies.

In fact, research reveals that burning the equivalent of 350 calories three times a week through sustained, sweat-inducing activity can reduce symptoms of depression as effectively as antidepressants -with none of the side effects.

But the benefits of exercise don’t stop there…

A new scientific study uncovers more unparalleled benefits of exercise. It revealed that increased muscle strength leads to improved brain function in adults with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) – a condition where people suffer mostly memory problems that are not severe enough to interfere with daily life (unfortunately it is often considered to be the very early stages of Alzheimer’s disease).

Another study involved 86 women between the ages of 70 and 80 who also had MCI. The participants were divided into 3 groups:

a resistance training group

an aerobic exercise group

a balance and tone training group

Each group exercised twice weekly for six months.

Participants cognitive skills were measured with tests assessing executive functions (such as attention and inhibition) and memory. The brains of 22 participants were also scanned using functional MRI.

The results revealed that resistance training improved both executive functions and memory performance. Brain scans demonstrated increased blood flow to areas of the brain associated with improved performance (such as the occipital and frontal regions of the brain).

In contrast to prior studies, there was no benefit of the aerobic training on cognitive performance (even though the cardiovascular performance of the participants in this group did improve.

This study is one of the first randomized controlled trials comparing the efficacy of both resistance and aerobic training to improve cognitive functions.

It confirms and supports the results obtained a few years ago by the same team of researchers showing that 12 months of once or twice weekly strength training improved executive functions in healthy women ages 65-75 years old for up to 1 year after the training.

The study showed that after a short period of time (6 months) the effects of strength training can benefit cognition even in those who already suffer from cognitive impairment. Just 20 minutes of strength training was found to enhance long-term memory by about 10 percent.

Truth is, now is NOT the time to fall prey to the couch. Once we hit 40 years upwards, physical movement becomes really paramount. Even if you just start exercising at this time, you will still gain a great deal from it.

Science is very clear:

Memory loss and cognitive decline really depend on lifestyle. Your brain has the capacity to regenerate and grow throughout your entire life, and movement is a major key for all of these brain-boosting processes to occur.

Although it’s never too late to start, the earlier you begin and the more consistent you are, the greater are your long-term rewards.

The reality is, an active lifestyle is really an investment in your future well-being, both physically and mentally.

The responsibility for your health and fitness falls directly on you. However, you are also the one that reaps the rewards and benefits from your accountability.

If you truly want to take command of your life and avoid disease somewhere down the road – your muscles need to be in tip-top condition…strong and toned at all times – starting now.

“Reclaim Your Longevity” can help you do just that…

For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit:

Carolyn Hansen Fitness

Diet, Exercise and Your Heart

From the time you are born until the moment you pass, there is one muscle that does not stop working. That muscle is your heart muscle.

This incredibly strong, resilient muscle never stop contracting. It pumps blood relentlessly unless we do something damaging to clog up the arterial system that delivers oxygen and nutrients to it. Unfortunately, when this begins we are blissfully unaware that the problem exists and that it is growing more dire by the day.

Heart disease is nothing to fool around with. It is one of the most common causes of early death and shortened lifespans. Often the first indication that there is a problem is when someone experiences a heart attack that seems to come out of nowhere with the potential to kill or put them in the hospital.

The reality is, the damage has been occurring for sometime. It is the result of a narrowing of the arteries due to plaque build up on the artery walls. Plaque itself is a combination of cholesterol deposits and the white blood cells that the body uses to attempt to clean out the cholesterol build up.

Causes of plaque could be many things including:

high blood pressure

high levels of cholesterol

smoking

high levels of sugar in the blood

Assuming diet is a contributing factor, cholesterol levels will need to be reduced in order to give the body a chance to repair the damage. Reducing the consumption of sugary foods is a great place to start. This includes all foods that fall into the category of simple carbohydrates, like breads, cakes, any pastries, pizza, pasta, potatoes and rice.

Next concentrate on reducing your consumption of unhealthy fats. Canola, margarine and other vegetable oils included. Add to your diet the following foods which are high in unsaturated (healthy) fats that help lower bad cholesterol levels: olive oil, avocados, walnuts, oily fish, nuts and seeds all fit the bill.

Further preventive measures:

Quit smoking: That should be obvious. Smoking kills. It is one of the major risk factors for atherosclerosis (artery narrowing). It also raises your blood pressure.

Begin exercising: Just like exercise strengthens other muscles of your body, working out helps your heart muscle become more efficient, stronger and better able to pump blood throughout your body. It improves your overall fitness levels and lowers your blood pressure. It is an important way to lower your risk of heart disease. Regular exercise helps your body’s tissue do a better job of pulling needed oxygen from your blood. This allows your heart to work better under stress and also helps you to avoid being winded during high-intensity activities.

Not only will your heart benefit when you start exercising regularly, but you’ll sleep better, have more energy, enjoy heightened moods all while lowering your risk of osteoporosis and some types of cancer.

Exercising regularly is a win-win for all muscles (including your heart), your bones, your brain and your mood!

Don’t wait for a heart attack to tell you your heart needs attention. Be proactive and give your heart what it needs now. Your body and your lifespan will thank you for it!

If you truly want to stop the aging process and avoid a heart attack down the road, you need to exchange your sedentary lifestyle for one that promotes muscle strength.

Strength training is key.

If you can only do one type of exercise variation, resistance training should be your number one choice. It is the one exercise that will make all your muscles stronger and boost your immune system.

Everything you need to know to slow down and even reverse the aging clock can be found in my anti-aging library of help: “Reclaim Your Longevity.”

For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit:

Carolyn Hansen Fitness

Isn’t it time to throw away all the false statements you’ve accepted about dieting and exercise and learn what it really takes to stay healthy and fit long into your senior years?

Mighty Omega-3 Fatty Acids

On your journey to health, a sufficient intake of Omega-3 fatty acids is mandatory.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids offer incredible benefits for both the body and the brain. In fact, getting an adequate amount of this powerful nutrient both during pregnancy and early life is crucial for early on healthy, normal development of children, while a deficiency of omega-3 early on has been linked to poor eyesight as well as lowered intelligence and an increase in other health issues.

Omega-3 fatty acids provide key nutrients that the brain needs to function optimally and are vital for keeping inflammation levels down. Those who consume adequate omega-3 fatty acids on a regular basis are less likely to develop debilitating conditions like Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, schizophrenia, depression, and even bipolar disorder.

Although Omega-3’s are a must for psychological health, most people still fall short in consuming enough of them with their day to day diet plan. If you find yourself in this group, focus on increasing your intake by choosing omega-3 rich foods. Salmon, mackerel, flaxseeds, flaxseed oil, leafy veggies and walnuts are all great choices.

While increasing your intake of omega-3 fatty acids, reduce your intake of omega-6 fatty acids. These are harmful to psychological health and can be found in processed foods as well as vegetable oils.

Omega-3 fats are a key family of polyunsaturated fats. There are three types of omega-3 fatty acids: ALA, EPA, and DHA.

  • Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are sometimes called “marine omega-3’s” because they come mainly from fish.
  • The most common omega-3 fatty acid is Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). It is found in vegetable oils and nuts (especially walnuts), flax seeds and flaxseed oil, leafy vegetables, and some animal fats (focus on grass fed). ALA is what the human body generally uses for energy, while conversion into EPA and DHA is limited. EPA appears to be the best at fighting depression.

Omega 3’s Improve Risk Factors For Heart Disease

Heart attacks and strokes are currently the world’s leading causes of death and this is where omega-3’s help because a great deal of the strong evidence presented for the beneficial effects of omega-3 fats has to do with heart disease. It seems these fats keep the heart beating at a steady clip, avoiding a dangerous or potentially fatal erratic rhythm.

Omega-3’s improve and reduce the risk of many diseases and offer a wealth of benefits with heart disease leading the pack. Years ago, scientists observed that fish-eating cultures had lowered rates of heart disease and this was later partially attributed to their omega-3.

These healthy fatty acids continue to reveal numerous benefits for heart health.

These include:

  • Inflammation: Omega-3s reduce some substances released during the inflammatory response
  • Triglycerides: Omega-3s can cause a major reduction in triglycerides
  • Blood pressure: Omega-3s reduces blood pressure levels in those with high blood pressure
  • HDL-cholesterol: Omega-3 raise HDL (the “good”) cholesterol levels
  • Blood clots: Omega-3s help prevent the formation of harmful blood clots by keeping blood platelets from clumping together
  • Plaque: Omega-3s help prevent the plaque that can restrict and harden the arteries by keeping the arteries smooth and free from damage

Although omega-3s have been found to improve numerous heart disease risk factors, omega-3 supplements have not proven to reduce the risk of heart attacks or strokes.

Your body has the potential and the power, to slow down the aging process and restore itself to a level of wellness that it may no longer be experiencing. Superior health. the kind that pays off long-term, involves maintaining healthy body weight throughout life, eating a healthy diet, and having sufficient physical activity in our lives.

The information here, when implemented as suggested, will be life changing and you will enjoy greater health like never before.

“Reclaim Your Longevity” can help you do just that…

For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit:

Carolyn Hansen Fitness

Reverse the Aging Process with Strength Training

With advancing age, comes change. However, the changes that occur are accelerated or stalled depending on our actions. Whatever we continually put into play mentally and physically becomes our world…including our health – the foundation of all other things.

If our lives have been sedentary for the most part, then aging means weight gain, lost muscle mass and suffering from aches and pains – all the result of being out of shape. If we have not cared for our body physically, then our diet has likely suffered through the years too. A sedentary lifestyle coupled with poor nutrition is a formula for the early onset of disease and “age acceleration.”

Wearing glasses and hearing aids and engaging in cosmetic surgical procedures as well as dying one’s hair are all popular and effective methods of adapting to some of the “effects” of aging. However, they only ease the effects and do nothing to stop the aging process itself.

The most effective thing that can be done to “reverse the aging process” is to engage in regular strength training exercise.

Muscles are the engines of our body where energy is released, power is produced and movement originates. Because the condition of our engine has a lot to do with the way we look, feel and function, strong muscles are very advantageous and the only way to get strong muscles is to use them.

Muscle mass is mandatory for healthy living and longevity. But, the reality is, you and I (and everyone else) have been losing muscle and gaining fat every day since sometime in our twenties and studies reveal that most of this muscle loss is due to the fact that we’ve stopped doing active things that require muscle power – not because we age.  This gradual loss of muscle mass starts a vicious cycle as it weakens the entire body. The immune system, nerve cells, hormones and other chemicals are all negatively affected.

The truth is, if you are not building muscle, then you’re losing it. If your body is not receiving the necessary stimulus to trigger muscle growth, a slow process of muscle atrophy or wasting begins. This loss of muscle tissue directly or indirectly causes the degenerative processes and conditions that characterize the aging process.

In other words, lack of movement is devastating to the human body.

Since most of us are employed in jobs that don’t require maximum use of our muscles, we need to create avenues that actively engage and put them to use. Strength training is the answer.

Only strength training can prevent age-related muscle loss. No other form of exercise or physical activity is adequate. Strength training is not only the most effective exercise in addressing the biomarkers that affect how young we look, but more importantly, how young we feel. It is empowered to reverse many components of the aging process and is probably the single most effective way to lengthen life.

Although aerobic activity helps your heart (the most effective fitness programs consist of strengthening component and a cardiovascular component), they alone fail to stop muscle loss. Just being “active” is not enough either. Becoming stronger is key. It’s what helps you remain active for your entire life.

Strength training makes you stronger and improves the quality of your life no matter when you begin. Even if you are currently enjoying your nineties, strength training can add valuable, active years to your life.  In fact, six months of proper strength training has the power to turn back one of the body’s molecular clocks and rejuvenate aging muscles to the extent that they are nearly as powerful as those found in someone much younger.

If you’ve been searching for the perfect anti-aging pill, search no more. Proper strength training exercise can rejuvenate and take years off your chronological age and it’s all natural.  In other words, proper exercise adds years to your life and life to your years. It does not matter if you are a 40-year-old runner or 75-year-old retiree when you begin.

Bottom line is this

Strength is not a luxury as we age. Increasing strength is now a proven way to make the aging process turn around at the genetic level within the cell. It is an absolute necessity for longevity and health. Strong muscles lead to strong bones and increased bone mineral density.

Those that age well and seem younger than their years, retain their lean tissue mass and have a longer life, fewer illnesses, and better mental functioning.

The right exercise program will increase your lean muscle mass, and your metabolic rate – burning more calories and producing more energy. This is the real secret to turning back the aging clock.

Your body has the potential and the power, to slow down the aging process and restore itself to a level of wellness that it may no longer be experiencing. Superior health. the kind that pays off long-term, involves maintaining healthy body weight throughout life, eating a healthy diet, and having sufficient physical activity in our lives.

The information here, when implemented as suggested, will be life changing and you will enjoy greater health like never before.

“Reclaim Your Longevity” can help you do just that…

For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit:

Carolyn Hansen Fitness

Mighty Muscle Magic…

The biological role of skeletal muscles goes far beyond locomotion and, it’s becoming crystal clear that the benefits derived from our muscular system are essential to our health.

The muscular system, our largest energy facility, is responsible for keeping our metabolic system intact. It protects us against metabolic and hormonal decline, obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

Muscle strength not only makes every task and activity easier to perform, but the amount of toned muscle also relates to control of body weight, bone health, cellular rejuvenation and a reduced risk of certain diseases.

As an aging adult, few things impact the quality of life as much as seeing your functional strength decrease. Lose enough strength, and you’ll no longer be able to perform even the basic functions of daily living and this in turn dramatically effects how you feel about yourself and your level of happiness.

What causes muscle downgrade?

Hormonal disorders such as insulin resistance, inflammatory disease, dietary abuse, nutritional deficiencies and chemical toxicity all contribute to muscle downgrade, however, the main culprit is not doing enough muscle building and maintenance activity. In other words…living a sedentary lifestyle.

One of the most powerful and important things you can do to reverse muscle and bone loss is strength training. It is the perfect anecdote and the only type of exercise that stimulates the release of HGH. Human Growth Hormone helps your body build more youthful muscle tissue.

The body is a very efficient machine. If your muscles are not being stimulated, you are basically sending the message to your body that you no longer need lean muscle mass. Since muscle mass is an energy costly substance to maintain, if your body doesn’t need it, it wants to get rid of it.

Strength training however, sends the message to your body loud and clear that it still needs to be strong and needs this muscle to complete your daily strength training exercises.

If you are currently trying to shed fat, the more muscle you have, the easier it is to lose because your resting metabolic rate is fast and working for you. And, let’s not forget about what strong healthy muscles do to build strength in our joints and bones as well. Osteoporosis is a serious condition that sadly impacts far too many older adults. Without actively strengthening their muscles, their bones get weak and brittle and all it takes is one small misstep to happen that breaks a bone.

Maintaining your lean muscle mass is mandatory if you want to live a long productive life. As a bonus, you’ll get a boost to your self-esteem and self-confidence. You’ll feel better about the way you look as you maintain that fit appearance.

Your body was made to move. Keeping your body in shape not only makes you feel younger and stronger, but also might just save your life. Remember, it’s never too late to start. You are better off doing something now than just letting your health continue to decline due to the process of aging.

If you truly want to stop the aging process, you need to put an exchange your sedentary lifestyle for one that promotes muscle strength.

Strength training is key.

If you can only do one type of exercise variation, resistance training should be your number one choice. It is the one exercise that will make all your muscles stronger, boost your immune system and is empowered to restore your manhood.

Everything you need to know to slow down and even reverse the aging clock can be found in my anti-aging library of help: “Reclaim Your Longevity.”

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