Category Archives for "Healthy Habits"

Use Your Stress -O -Meter?

No one has ever been through anything exactly like THIS.

It’s so universal, no one has a name for THIS.

Everyone just gets it.

Of course, we want to tell people… “We’re here to help.”

But frankly, you’re probably sick of it. You normal has just been thrown out of whack.

So what good advice can I offer?

Dean and I are not really sure. The truth is, we’re figuring THIS out too.

And there’s no cut-and-dried 5-step “how to” article for THIS.

So I won’t presume to tell you I have “the answer.” 

Or any answers.

Instead, maybe just envision that each one of us is wearing a Stress -O -Meter. It looks kind of like a temperature gauge but instead of measuring heat, it is measuring our internal stress temperature. Others must have thought of this because when someone is really angry, we say that person is ‘hot’. We tell that same person to “cool your jets”.

With THIS going around it is safe to say everyone’s Stress -O - Meter is kicked up a few notches more than normal.

I have always been amazed at how the Cr8 Fitness family has responded with love, kindness, and generosity. I know if we could see inside each person we’d want to help ease their stress and help them to bring down their stress level. While I wish I had the answer to THIS, I do know we can see good if we look.  We might not have the same opportunities to meet face to face but we still have many opportunities to connect. When you do realize each person’s Stress - O -Meter is high. Words of kindness can bring all of our gages down a few degrees. That’s all.

Oh, and apologies go a long way if something stupid is said.

We're all in THIS,

Coach Nancy

P.S. I really hate THIS too.

Yes Virginia, There Is Still A Recovery Week

There have been some questions regarding if we are still taking our scheduled recovery week next week, March 30 - April 4.

The answer is YES, for 2 reasons.

1) First and foremost, because it is a scheduled recovery week. Duh! 🙂 Seriously though this is part of your training plan; work hard for your training phase, and then Rest, Recover and Regenerate. You can read more about that from a previous article here: You Are Not A Unicorn

2) Second, and I feel kinda weird saying this, but recovery weeks are not, "Nancy and Dean Vacation Weeks". Yes, once a year we plan a trip during a recovery week, which is in truth the ONLY time we can go anywhere. Usually they are a focused work time prepping for the next training phase. Many of you know we had planned next week to be a family trip, which was cancelled because of the Coronavirus Pandemic, and since we are not going wondered if we would stay open. First read #1 again. 🙂 Recovery weeks are one of our core training principles. And secondly Nancy will be making a previously unplanned trip to visit and care for her father, who was put in home hospice this week and does not have much time left. She needs to be there, I know you understand.

I would be remiss if I did not express my gratitude at how y'all are supporting us during this time. You have smoothly pivoted to our hybrid training model of live and Zoom training sessions, you have kept the energy high and the spirit fun, even in very trying times. My encouragement to you is this...

Stay The Course. 

Although we still hope it doesn't happen, we are planning as if NH will direct a "shelter-in-place" at some point. We are prepared to serve you through it, if it should happen. I am direct person, so I will be direct here - we need you to stay with us if we are to survive. The reasons you choose to train here have not changed, the need to exercise regularly and eat well have not changed, and if anything, being part of a supportive family is even MORE important during times when we are more isolated physically.

So relax and take a break from hard training next week. Get out and take a walk. Visit our Vimeo Page and folllow along with our 30 Minute Relaxation Flow or Livin' La Vida Lacrosse Ball mobility sessions. 

And who know, Coach Dean might even do a popup Facebook Live session with y'all next week!

So keep at it. Work on your Coach Catalyst habits. Get to training how you can today and tomorrow.

And keep smiling, We love you all.

Dean and Nancy

Better To Trip With The Feet…

“Better to trip with the feet than with the tongue.” —Zeno

None of us likes the experience of feeling "negative" emotions.

Stress, uneasiness, unhappiness, disappointment, or downright fear - they all feel, well, BAD.

And honestly they are supposed to. In fact it might have been one of those emotions that drove you to start training with us here at Cr8 Fitness, eating better, and working on building good health habits. I know the driver when I started my own 100 pound weight loss journey was fear; that I wouldn't have the energy to play with my kids, that I was doomed to have high blood pressure and diabetes, that I was digging myself and early grave. Those feelings drove me to take action and do something about it.

And I see you doing the same thing -  turning negative emotions into positive actions. 

Many of us are going through a lot of negative emotions right now. The Coranavirus is causing many people anxiety, fear, depression and anger. 

Can I encourage you not to play that game?

I am not being a Polyanna here. There are some real challenges we are facing, I am not blind to that. But don't let negative emotions linger. No good comes out of that. Respond, don't react. 

I am self-aware enough to know this. If I am not careful, when I am stressed I can say unkind things to the people I love the most. And that's where that quote comes in. Harsh words don't have an "undo" button. There are going to be some irritating people doing some irritating things through all this. But that's no different than any other time, right?

Now is the time to practice an extra level of kindness. We need each other. I realize that now more than ever. 

And I also know this - that Nancy and I are proud of you all, the amazing Cr8 Fitness family. The last couple weeks we have had to adjust and adapt the way we deliver our services. And you have adjusted and adapted with us. In fact you've done more than that - you have been an incredible encouragement along the way. It was a tiring week last week, I am not going to lie. But your support and pledge to continue to allow us to serve you in new and different ways is energizing. It makes us want to work even harder for you, so thank-you.

And Remember This: The reasons to commit to your healthy and fitness have come into even SHARPER focus over the last couple weeks. 

The reason older adults are more at risk for COVID-19 has less to do with the number of years they have been on earth, and more to do with the fact they have not been fighting the good fight to stay active and healthy. Those who have sought to preserve and build muscle, eat nutritious foods, and maintain healthy immune systems are way ahead of the game. Now is not the time for any of us to stop fighting that good fight. 

If there is good to come out of this, and there will be, I hope one of the "good" is that more people will purpose to take care of themselves better.

And practice more kindness.

Yes Dean Carlson, I am talking to you.

Make It Happen!

- DC

P.S. If you want to practice a little kindness AND help our local small business community, click here

Training for you To Tackle

Dean and I want you to have the care your are used to whether you are able to come into training or choose to stay home. Everyone in the Cr8 Fitness family has already had a nutrition coaching program delivered to their email inbox. I will send it to your friends and family just let me know. (The invitation came from 'The Grateful Plate" so check your spam if you don't see it.) 

Please be in contact with us daily. I am expecting to see you in person, or have a text, email, response on Facebook, a note in Coach Catalyst or a phone call every day. Let us know if we can do anything for you.

We have created this program to help you practice self-care and stay active over the next few weeks. If you are feeling well, self-care includes:

  •  Drinking plenty of fluids
  •  Getting adequate sleep
  • Staying active and exercising regularly
  • Eating plenty of colorful vegetables and fruits
  • Minimizing stress
  • Limiting alcohol
  • Not smoking or vaping
  • Washing your hands frequently

If you feel unwell, you need to follow the advice of your health care provider.


COVID-19 is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It's caused by a virus called coronavirus. For more advice on how to protect yourself, visit the WHO website.


How to avoid catching or spreading coronavirus:

  • Regularly wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. I have it on good authority that if you sing 'Happy Birthday' to yourself twice while washing you'll have washed for 20 seconds. 
  • Always wash your hands when you get home or into work
  • Use hand sanitizer gel if soap and water are not available
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • Put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterward
  • Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell
  • Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean

  Stay at home if you begin to feel unwell, even with mild symptoms such as headache and slight runny nose, until you recover. This will help you to avoid contact with others and allow medical facilities to operate more effectively.

  If you develop fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical advice promptly as this may be due to a respiratory infection or other serious condition. Do not go to a medical facility but, instead, call in advance. This will allow your health care provider to quickly direct you to the correct health facility and help to prevent possible spread of COVID-19 and other viruses.

  If you do need to stay home, do not leave the house or visit public places. Ask friends and family and delivery services to deliver things like food shopping and medicines – but avoid contact with them (ask people to leave deliveries outside). Try to stay away from older people and those with long-term health conditions. Try to keep at least 6 - 7 feet (3 steps) from other people in your home.

Don't Despair - We Got Options!

1) Get a little extra sleep, and then spend some time on a foam roller, stretching and flexibility training. You have enough knowledge to make this time productive.

2) Do any additional nutrition planning and prep work for the week. Remember you should already be on Coach Catalyst daily with Coach Nancy.

3) Jump on one of the training videos below. There are options for bodyweight only as well as band training.

4) Don't stress out!

Check out the options to get in a little exercise on your own. Use at your own risk, and if you shouldn't be doing something or don't know how - don't!


Option 1
Active Warmup #1 (5 minutes)
Basic Training 1 or Basic Training 2 (20 minutes each)
2010 Core Finisher (4m)

Option 2
Active Warmup #1 (5m)
2010 Core Warmup (4m)
4020 Band (10m)
2040 Metcon (10m)

Option 3
Active Warmup #1 (5 minutes)
2010 Core Warmup (4m)
Basic Training 1 or Basic Training 2 (20 minutes each)
2040 Metcon (10m)

Beat The Band Training from Dean Carlson on Vimeo.

We're family so keep in touch,

Coach Nancy and Coach Dean

5 Ways YOU Can Lead When Life Gets Crazy

Truth is you already ARE a leader. 

You may not lead a company, a country, or an army. But not many of us do.

And you don't have to lead hundreds, thousands or millions to make an impact.

Whether you realize or not, a commitment to better health shows real leadership. It demonstrates that you are not content to let "stuff" just happen to you. You are not content to give in to what others say are inevitable as we age - low energy, less muscle, more weight gain. You know that if you take action the "inevitable" can be delayed, and you can not just live, but thrive.

Because you are rising to the challenge, others are watching you. And many are inspired to take on the challenge themselves. That is leadership.

Right now, at this point in history, the whole world needs good leadership. But it starts at home, it starts with you and me. The best leaders are focused on how to serve others.  Here's some ways to lead and serve in the days to come.

Be Kind. Yes, people can be jerks. Don't be one of them. Respond don't react. Let the other guy be the blowhard on social media. Criticizing someone else is easy. ​

Reach Out: Is there someone you know that might need a hand? An elderly person who needs to know someone is out there that cares? The kid down the street who might be hungry because schools are shut down and that is what they rely on? Now is not the time to have a policy discussion about the merits or failings of public assistance. Now is the time to help where you can.

Stay Calm: Yes, things are unsettled and for some a little (or a lot) scary. Stress levels are up for many. It's easy to get irritated and angry with those around us, especially family. Sometimes I just need to go outside and take a walk. You are welcome to join me.

Lean In: Keep your routine as much as possible. Circumstances around you may have changed, your health and fitness needs have not. Don't stay up all night keeping up on the latest news - get your sleep. Stay active and keep moving. Put healthy food on your plate. Keep the alcohol consumption reasonable.

Stay in Touch: We are family, don't cut us off. Visit the "Fit, Healthy, Happy" group and see what's going on. Let us know how we can help. One of the best parts of what we do is getting to see you every day, and if and when that can't happen in person, we gotta find a way! 

Thank-you for being part of our family, and allowing us to be part of your life. It's times like these when we realize how special of a place you have in our hearts.

Oh, the best leaders also wash their hands - often! 🙂

Be good. Do good.

- DC

Please Read: Updated Gym Action Plan 3/15/2020

Coach Nancy and I have been closely monitoring the news feeds and staying abreast of the latest recommendations and protocols. We are taking it one week (and really one day) at a time as far as the current training schedule goes, Yesterday we highlighted what we are doing in the gym to keep you safe, and this is a further update.

We have thought long and hard about how to maintain best practices while still providing service to you. For now we are staying open, but with some significant changes as follows:

9:00am Ladies, 4:00pm and 6:00pm training will be held outside. Early morning classes are invited to train in the afternoons without notifying us. I (Coach Dean) will be co-coaching with Coach Nancy when needed (such as a large class size) to keep you safe and training appropriately. We are well equipped to modify training for all levels and abilities. 

5:00am and 6:15 will continue to train indoors, but all windows and doors will be open. If you are uncomfortable being inside, come in the afternoon.

Important Notes:

1) Dress According to conditions. You might have to mess up that beautiful "do" and wear a hat and gloves. Layer clothing.

2) Parking. There is overflow parking across the street, to the RIGHT of the driveway in the grass. Please do not park to the left in the field. To the right is family property, to the left is not. Play nice.

3) Communicate with us. Please let Nancy know you are coming to an afternoon class if that is not your norm. She is extremely busy attending to many challenges, so a little help is appreciated.

4) This is the plan for the upcoming week only. We will monitor the situation and further alter from there. We may end up taking recovery week early.

More Thoughts:

The plan is to get you a complete two-week training schedule out by the end of the day tomorrow that you can do at home if you desire. Now is NOT the time to stop self-care. Exercise, eat well, get sleep, relax.

I am not averse to saying that Cr8 Fitness is better prepared to handle this than 99% of the fitness facilities out there (or more). 🙂 We have the facility, skills, and property to comply with recommendations from the government for best practices and social distancing when necessary. Even with that being said, we are counting on you, the Cr8 Fitness Family, to help us weather this storm. Businesses like ours aren't the ones that are going to be getting assistance - we are on our own. I am not too proud to say we need your continued support and patronage to get through this intact, and I thank-you for choosing to train with us and be part of the family.

If you have any questions, please let us know.

Coach Dean for Coach Nancy

Immune System Checklist and Cr8 Fitness Action Plan

We are working hard to keep you healthy - all the time. We have enhanced and modified our cleaning and training protocols during this time as well - We see way more people than most on a regular basis, and we want to stay healthy too! Check out this free download that has a checklist to help boost your immune system, as well as our 3 Phase Action plan and contingencies to keep you training.

Committed To You!

Nancy and Dean

Don’t Make Temptation Easy

Keep junk food out of sight. And out of the house!

You can’t eat what you don’t have. Don’t keep junk food in the house, and if there’s a goodie jar at work, keep it out of sight. If you have tempting treats in sight, every time you walk by them you have to make a conscious decision to say ‘No’. Eventually the ‘No’ turns into “Well, just this once”, and pretty soon you’re back to mindlessly popping hundreds of calories of sugar into your mouth every day. Stay out of trouble by keeping sweets out of reach!

Please don’t buy into the “well, I only buy ice cream for my husband” bit. If you truly are going to eat healthier, you need to break your addiction. One way you can do this is to build better habits. Don’t be co-dependent. He’s a grownup, if he really wants ice cream, he can get his own.

Here are 10 more ways you can easily improve your health:

  1. Take a walk (or a quick jog if that’s an appropriate kind of exercise for you).
  2. Take 30 seconds to stand up and stretch something at least 3 times per day. Start when you wake up!
  3. If you haven’t started doing so yet, make sure you eat protein at breakfast.
  4. Think of something you’re grateful for.
  5. Put a vegetable or fruit on your plate every time you eat. Any plant, even a couple baby carrots or an apple slice will do.
  6. Plan the next day’s food before you go to sleep.
  7. Drink a glass of water.
  8. When you’re stressed about something, add on the reminder that you are smart and 100% in control of your actions and your attitude.
  9. Send a message to a friend or family member letting them know that you love them.
  10. Take three deep breaths. Don’t forget to smile!

 Bonus Tip:  Don’t play in traffic – keep junk food out of the house!

To you Best Health,

Coach Nancy

No Flu For You

Let’s face it, none of us enjoy being sick. With all the talk of Novel 2019-nCoV coronavirus, now is a good time to review some simple strategies to stay healthy. There are positive steps you can take everyday to boost the chances of avoiding sickness. Don’t accept the fact that “everybody gets sick” even if that just means a cold.

Boost your immune system with the following strategy:

  1. Eat a nutritious diet full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, and remember that sugar suppresses your immune system.
  2. Drink plenty of water
  3. Get to bed early and get a good night sleep – consistently!
  4. Exercise regularly. Your body produces antibodies when you train vigorously, boosting your immune system.

The CDC offers the following daily preventative actions:

  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub. We have a container in the gym.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.

Keeping your training space cold and flu free

We have consulted with commercial cleaning experts as to the best cleaners and disinfectants to use. This solution is used to mop the floors in our Epsom facility, as well as disinfect the bands and other equipment. Alcohol based hand rubs are available to use as needed and after training.

Sharing of yoga is a big no no. A good quality mat costs less than $25.00, so please purchase one for your own use if you prefer to train on one. Please write your name on your mat.

Here is what we do inside the gym.

  • In between classes, I wipe down any visible dirt/sweat. There are gym wipes available for you to use on the equipment.
  • Once a day a general cleaning and sterilization is done of the gym and the equipment. 
  • This week I did a Spring cleaning. The deep cleaning just in case. 

Let’s all pull together and do what it takes to stay healthy this winter!

Make It Happen,

Nancy and Dean

Make the Most of Everyday

I was reminded once again this week how short life is, and how time passes by so fast.

The first thing that reminded me was that today is my 34th anniversary. You guys that are in your late teens and early 20’s probably think being married 34 years is FOR-EV-ER, but to me that time has swept through like a passing breeze. I think that Dean and I would both agree that our marriage has it’s ups and downs. Just like a healthy body, the hard work and commitment a healthy marriage takes is more than worth the effort. Just like when you are working toward being physically stronger there can be the temptation to quit when things get tough. I am grateful for a partner that has never quit on me.

I love you Dean Carlson.

The second thing that reminded me that life is short is that cancer is an illness that hits home very closely. My Dad and sister are still fighting this disease. Events in our lives or the lives of the ones we care about can and should refocus us on what is really important. 

We make choices every day.

Choose to make the most of this one, and every one you are given.

Make It Happen!

Coach Nancy

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