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Here in the Grand Valley our weather is starting to get the slightest hint of cold. The holidays are just around the corner. Are you ready to make it a healthy season this year? Here are some essential tips on maintaining a healthy lifestyle during the holidays.

It's Party Time! How to avoid gaining weight but still be the life of the party:

· Know what types of foods will be there and what you are going to choose to eat. Let’s face it; in general, you know what types of foods are on the holiday dinner table. Plan ahead of time which foods are important to you and which you could do without. Choose your favorites but pass on those that are not special to you.

· Don’t go to the table telling people you’re “eating healthy this holiday season”. There’s no need to bring attention to your food choices. People will feel that you are not enjoying yourself or that they should feel guilty about what they are eating. You’re more likely to have success if you keep it low-key.

· Fill your plate...

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Moms everywhere tend to put themselves on the bottom of the priority list. Well, it’s time that mom puts herself on the top rung of that ladder. What we won’t do for ourselves we will do for our children. Do you want them to know how to embrace health and wellness? Well, then you need to be the role model mom. Let's talk about how we can fit fitness, healthy eating and stress management in so we can practice OptiMOM health!

Make Fitness a Family Affair

The benefits of exercise are enjoyed by children as well as adults. Any form of physical activity that is regular, enjoyable, and sustainable is the desired endpoint.

Here are some sample total body exercises you can do with your stroller while on a walk with your family, letting your older kiddo play, or just by yourself! Always make sure stroller is stable. Do not ever hang on stroller.

  • Warm Up: Start with an easy walk, gradually warming up your body and your muscles. The most common postural dysfunction when pushing a stroller is hunching forward, so be...

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In this era of prenatal fitness, most women know that exercise during a normal pregnancy is safe. Yet, when it comes to the particulars – Is it ok to work my abs? Do I have to stop running? Should I keep my heart rate low? Can I START exercising now? These myths and misconceptions that hold women back seem to persist. I’m here to offer you a reality check on the fitness myths that just won't die.

Pregnancy is the ideal time to get moving. When you’re considering activity during pregnancy, the real risk is inactivity. Inactivity, especially during pregnancy, contributes to excess weight gain, high blood pressure, increased aches and pains, and puts pregnant women at an increased risk for Cesarean section and gestational diabetes. If you have no prenatal medical complications, as much as 60 minutes of moderate activity is safe for you to perform. There is no need to go any higher than a moderate rate of exertion as you can get all of the benefits from that pace.

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It’s summer. The season that is between spring and fall, the hottest part of the year, the best season, the worst season. However you want to describe it, we all have a common thought in mind and that’s STAYING COOL.

As someone who spends a lot of time outdoors in the summer, teaching FIT4MOM Fruita classes and playing in our beautiful state, keeping my kids, my participants, their kids and myself cool is always at the front of my mind. Strollers and infant carriers can be especially hot for our little ones so I’m here to help give you some ideas on staying cool until fall.

Hot and Cold Gel packs: A frozen gel pack wrapped in a dish towel makes a wonderful climate control backrest for your little one. It’s squishy so it is not uncomfortable to lean against and because it is frozen it will keep baby nice and cool without being too cold. You can make your own by combing a few simple ingredients that most of us have around the house.

What you need:

  • 1 quart or 1 gallon plastic freezer bags (depending on how large you want the...

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Everyone knows that I teach Stroller Strides classes as part of the wonderful offerings of FIT4MOM Fruita.

These classes are high energy, stroller integrated and generally outdoors. A lot of instructors teach without music but after spending almost 10 years in the fitness industry, I've learned that having music keeps people engaged and motivated. Without music, there's silence and silence can be AWKWARD.

I recently found myself teaching outside on a beautiful, crisp, Colorado spring morning and started digging around in my bag for my usual Bluetooth speaker. My hand felt blindly around in the usual spot and felt nothing but empty space. Horror set in as I realized that I HAD LEFT MY SPEAKER AT HOME. My mind raced...how on earth was I supposed to teach a high energy class without my beloved Stroller Strides playlist!?

I started to think.... I didn't have time to go home and get the speaker. I couldn't call my husband to bring it. I have a terrible singing voice and there was NO WAY I could belt out any of the songs on that list. The first cars pulled...

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