Healthy for Life

Summertime moments, movement and meditation motivation

Julie is pictured (l. to r.) with her mother (Betty), Grandmother Katie and Grandmother Edna. Submitted photo.

Julie is pictured (l. to r.) with her mother (Betty), Grandmother Katie and Grandmother Edna. Submitted photo.

Hi, everyone out there. Summertime is officially in full swing, especially with trying to keep the multiple bugs away! I hope that summer is being good for you so far, and you’re taking time to be in the moment and to appreciate every breath our bodies have been blessed with.

Upon arising, along with prayer and meditation, consider doing some slow deep breaths and/or light stretching. Try it while lying or sitting in bed or take it outside in the fresh air. Getting oxygen into your bloodstream helps those muscles and organs to function happily and healthy.

Besides making your muscles feel more flexible when stretching first thing when you get out of bed, it also allows you to be more flexible in your thinking. Whatever the day may bring, it should help you to be more resilient and relaxed and make your life a little more manageable.

Taking time throughout the day to breathe and stretch will definitely help to cease the moment, especially if you’re sitting at a desk all day, standing constantly, doing strenuous labor, chasing kids or just having a downright stressful job or day.



How you begin your day will set the pace. To keep it flowing smoothly, you only need a few minutes to breathe and stretch. Remember, where the mind goes, the body follows and where the body goes, the mind follows. May you keep your spirit alive and fine-tuned!

Thank you to all the individuals and businesses that have sacrificed and are continuing to practice social distancing, wearing masks or taking precautions to help us all move forward and acknowledge our part for a continued safe and healthy environment.

Although it may seem we in the Northland are in the clear, we are never completely out of the woods. Thank you for your prayers and enlightenment. And as my grandmothers and mother before me would say, “God love ya!”

Kids and parents unite on better choices

To help you feel your best this summer, here are a few tips to help you cut back on those extra calories and pounds:

• Watch your soda and juice Intake.
• Try water instead. Add fresh fruits
or herbs. Also try making ice cubes or
popsicles with them. Carbonated sugary
drinks have been proven to be a major
contributor to diabetes.
• Cut back on fast foods and eating out.
• Prepare healthy meals at home. Plan
menus and cook together. Get creative! It
can be a lot fun.

• Just say no to supersizing. Choose sensible portion sizes when dining out and at
• Limit snacking between meals.
• Select fresh fruits, vegetables or a lowfat, low-sugar smoothie or protein shake.
Try to limit portion sizes on chips and
sweets. Try to save them for parties and
special occasions.
• Move that body! Watch less TV.
• Try to limit the time spent playing computer games or watching TV, unless it involves moving. Try to pay attention to the
snacks you are eating. It’s easy to graze
when watching TV or on the computer.
• Get involved in family activities such as
walking, bicycling and playing games. Set
up playdates together.

In the middle—side twists

Besides exercise and paying attention to what you consume, paying attention to your midsection when you are moving throughout the day helps to keep the inches from accumulating. These movements are great for trimming the waistline. They help to promote mobility in the neck, shoulders and abdominal area. It can be done while sitting on a chair, bench, stool or stability ball.

How to do: Sit with your back straight up, stomach in, and your legs at 90-degree angle with feet flat. Place your hands on your shoulders. Complete an upper-body twist by moving your head, neck and abdominal area from one side until you feel the stretch in your stomach muscles. Repeat the twist to the other side. Repeat up to 10–20 times.

Julie is a Healthy for Life advocate. If you have any questions or would like to share your inspirations or information, contact her at or write to her at Hometown Focus, 401 6th Ave. N. Virginia, MN 55792.

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