Feature Reprinted from the Palisadian-Post | By:  Susan Howard, Special to the Palisadian-Post

Healthy Living | Originally published on June 12, 2014


Susan Howard, General Manager & Director of Lifestyle Performance Training at Studio K

We all have been reminded at one time or another that nobody is perfect and no body is perfect. But when it comes to health and fitness, it’s important to recognize that the common mistakes we make can impact our long-term wellness. Change your mistakes into fixes.

Mistake 1: The mindset that doing more is better.

Being a weekend warrior, working out seven days a week or pushing yourself to exhaustion is the recipe to injury and burn out.

Fix: Focus on quality not quantity.

Spending less total time training but really making it count is an effective way to improve. Use functional, efficient training that incorporates cardio, strength, core stability, balance and flexibility all in one workout. Stay focused on form and proper engagement of the muscles. It’s easier on your body and helps the body stay balanced.

Mistake 2: Stuck in a rut with the same routine.

Doing the same program can create plateaus in progress, can overuse certain muscles and can be reinforcing poor movement.

Fix: Mix up your workouts to create a balanced and strong body.

Trying new methods or techniques can awaken the body and challenge it to find growth. It can help to engage dormant muscles and find new awareness for both the mind and the body. We need to understand that our body works as a large system and each muscle group and body part plays in intricate part in our overall well-being.

Mistake 3: Incorrect breathing.

Incorrect breathing during exercise means holding your breath, breathing too shallow or breathing too fast. It can lead to your blood pressure rising, dizziness, fainting and potential stroke.

Fix: Be mindful of your breath.

Proper breathing is deep and relaxed. Ideally you want to breath from your diaphragm. A “belly” breathe is simply breathing in deeply enough so your belly (not your chest) rises, then falls as you exhale. Breathing properly ensures enough blood to flow to the muscles that need it and also flushes out the toxins in your muscles.

Mistake 4: Negative self-talk.

The inner self-critic scrutinizes each part of our body and our workouts. Negative reinforcement brings the mind and body into a less efficient state, therefore making progress more challenging. Plus it takes all the fun out!

Fix: Embody positivity in both your body and mind.

Make a mantra. Write down a list of words or sayings that are significant to you and repeat them to boost your positivity. Recognize that the healthy steps you are taking each day do make a difference to make improvements in your life and journey.

Mistake 5: Justifying food choices because of workouts.

Making excuses that you can have that cookie because you worked out or eating those french fries because you did your run for the day is not supporting the body’s needs.

Fix: Nutrition is key to fast and effective results.

Reward your body with  healthy choices to repair muscles and give it the nutrients it needs to have more energy. The foods you eat affect every system of the body including your hormones, skin and brain. Nutrition is the key to longevity, beauty and brain strength and disease prevention.
Note: Remember to always consult your physician before starting any program.

Susan Howard is the General Manager and Director of Lifestyle Performance Training at Studio K in Pacific Palisades. Her philosophy of lifestyle performance training is to incorporate all of the functional movements in a creative, efficient program to help individuals train for life.