Friday, July 31, 2009

Look at what you no longer see.

An amazing thing about us is that after a while we take the people we can absolutely depend on for granted. That friend that is always there for us. The spouse or partner that loves us with out condition. The co worker that goes out of their way to always try to make your day special.

We sometimes get to a point that the actions of these people have become so normal to us that we just really don't think about it. Like a child who knows that mom is going to have their clothes washed and supper ready. They don't really even think about it, it's just part of life like the soft bed at the end of the day, it's going to be there and doesn't require any thought.

So today let's all of us think about those people that make our lives bearable. Take the time to make some phone calls and give out those well deserved hugs. Let those people know that you really can't do without them.

How many marriages fail from neglect? What if you let your significant other know that they do mean the world to you. When was the last time you told them that? Don't you think it's time to just do something together as lovers not just room mates? One of life's great pleasures is going to a movie, your ladies head snuggled to your shoulder and sharing a popcorn. Or a moon light walk holding hands and talking about the wonderful memories you have shared and the adventures yet to come.

Stop at the market and pick up a big veggie and dip tray for your co workers. Thank those that help you and extend your hand in forgiveness and friendship to anyone that you have not been getting along with. I bet they are ready to make up to.

Today notice the people that you depend on and let them know how much you care for them.

Thanks for reading

Rambling Panda

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Staying Flexiable

Everyday we face challenges. Some of them we see coming and we can think them out before we deal with them. Usually though the really important issues blindside us when we least expect it and give us no time to prepare. Here lately there is a lot of blindsiding going on to everyone we know with the nation's economy going down. Just about every family I know is being hurt in some way by the job market.

Talk about being helpless, how do you respond to a dear friend or family member when you get a call that they have lost their jobs due to down sizing or companies closing. It's hard when that happens to someone, especially if they were good hard workers and supported their employers. It ranks right up there with finding out you have a serious illness as to how devastating it can be.

I don't have any answers, and lots of people who are economically smarter than me are at a loss right now how to handle it. But when you do have friends or family that have received bad news, here is something you can do.

You can reinforce the fact that your friend is a good person. Often loss of a job can make a person lose a lot of self esteem. Once the anger goes away the feelings of failure and depression set in. That's when your staying in touch and letting them know they are not failures is very important. Let them know they are precious to you and you value their friendship. Your genuine concern and caring is priceless, don't be shy about letting your friend know how important they are to you.

Love and caring are strong forces, often the best gift you can ever give or receive.

Thanks for reading.

Rambling Panda

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Harness the Power

All of us have a limited but immensely powerful resource. The power of our own mind. Has this ever happened to you? You are worried for days about something and it gets so overwhelming that it finally makes you sick? A big part of a wellness lifestyle is keeping your mental energy in control.

I know what you are thinking, no I'm not full of Panda Poo. You do really have the ability to use your power to make everything in your life better, yep you do. To start with you have to believe that no matter what is going on with you, it has a fix and it has an end. I know that can be very hard to believe but it's true.

When you have issues that are using up all your energy you have to take some back and the quicker the better. Also your mind is like a battery and needs to be recharged regularly. Today, do this: Ask yourself this question, is there anything I can do today, right now, this minute to fix my problem? If the answer is no then do this: Make a agreement with yourself that since you can't do anything about your problem right now, "I won't think about it for the rest of the day". "I'm going to do something that makes me feel good". I'm going to make love, I'm going to eat my favorite dinner tonight, I'm going to the park and take a long walk with my iPod....

Do something that makes you feel good and stop punishing yourself for the situation. Your not a bad person so stop the punishment. Let your heart and mind recharge for a little while. Unless you have a bear on your tail you probably have some wiggle room to clear your thoughts for a while. Once you do feel better then try to look at your situation as though it is someone else in the hot seat not you. Usually there is, it's your spouse who is going through it also. If so then include them in the advice above, take them to that dinner or whatever you decided to do.

Ask for help, if you can't look at something from an outside prospective. If it's job, or lack of it, related go to your local unemployment office and ask for an appointment with a counsellor, you are not an expert they are. I'm doing a job I love because someone else suggested it, the thought of becoming an optician never crossed my mind till the opportunity presented it's self.

If your concern is family related and you follow a religion ask for an appointment with your pastor or priest, they are trained counsellors. They and the unemployment counsellors are free assets by the way. What ever it is, if it's getting bigger than you then ask for help.

Keep yourself recharged. Lots of things will drain our energy fast. Fighting with your spouse, your friends, co workers and family are all horrible drains on our energy. One of the hardest things to do is forgive and put it behind you, but it's necessary to live. Especially important is to forgive yourself, if you have caused the situation you are in then remember you are a good person, you made some errors in judgement or actions and get it behind you. It will eat at you till you do.

I'm going through that right now, as a man who feels he failed as a parent because his child didn't turn out the way he wanted. I'm trying to practice what I preach and I have to admit that once I stopped trying to fix blame and look at solutions it's getting better. The alternative was to lose not only my child in my life but my lady as well.

When things get overwhelming, use your power to make it better, not to make yourself suffer.

Thanks for reading.

Rambling Panda

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Blog Followers

I write as often as I can, I know I miss some days because my heart and mind are on another mission. But this is my place to speak my thoughts and hopefully pass on some of the knowledge I've gained over the years mostly by trail and error but also by listening to smart people who can see what others often don't.

I want every one of you who follow my writing to know that it means more to me than you imagine. To know that someone is listening is a comfort that strengthens me and encourages me. Please know that I care about my fellow adventurers that are trying to make a difference in their lives both for them selves and for those that they can influence to care more for them selves.

We of all living things have the power to make our lives better and to help each other. We are very special, unique in all the universe, but we often lose sight of that and get in our personal ruts. We forget that we have power. Power to change and improve, Power to control our thoughts and Power to help our brothers and sisters when they need us.

We are all of us just a small, tiny, but not insignificant part of the world. Each of us has value and power and if enough of us care about our selves and each other we can move, not mountains but something more amazing, we can change the world and make it the Paradise it was meant to be.

All of you you read my writing thank you. I don't take it lightly, I'm honored beyond words.


Tuesday, July 21, 2009


One of the bad things that walkers and runners do is way to much of their training as just running or walking. The problem with that is balance. Especially when training for a long distance event. I know plenty of runners and walkers who do no other forms of exercise at all.

One of the most famous coaches in the sport of race walking says the you should do the majority of your training time walking, but not all your time. The next most important thing for you to do is flexibility exercise. And even he will tell you that before he walks he does a routine of leg swings and other dynamic motion, then a stretching routine after.

The next most important thing is to do some type of cross training that complements your primary sport. For distance runners, doing speed drills, hill repeats and stairs are excellent cross training. For walkers, hiking, running and stairs will complement very well. In addition to a cross training that complements you also need to do activities that work the muscles that are not directly used in running and walking.

Riding a bike is great but doesn't give you much of an upper body workout. Activities like swimming, Pilate's and weight training are of course great ways to hit the muscles not used in walking and running but there are a lot of others also. Playing a sport that uses your whole body is the best for overall conditioning but most of us don't have access to a soccer team to play on or a water polo team. So we have to find ways to improvise.

One of the best all over training activities is trail running/walking on rough terrain. Great for balance and strength building. No contact sparing with a partner is an intense workout that uses your whole body. That's why boxing and martial arts have breaks between rounds, 3 min of sparing will leave you more spent than a hard 5 miler. Try it. But remember wear the gloves and no contact.

What ever your sport, if you strengthen all the supporting muscles as well as the primary ones you will do your sport much better, be much less injury prone and a better all around athlete.

Thanks for reading.

Cross training Panda

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Breathe for Power

When you are going to race and you want to perform at your best there are a few tips to give you an edge. I know everyone has heard start slower so you don't burn yourself out during the first mile. Well if you warm up properly you can start right out at your planned race pace.

Warm up done right takes a good half hour. Start with brisk walking for 10 to 15 min till you are feeling loose and moving smoothly. Then add short bursts of speed walking (or running if you are a runner), bursts of 25 to 100 meters. Alternate brisk and speed for another 10 min. Once you start sweating then relax with some gentle stretching for a few minutes. No hard stretching just do the stretches gently and get your whole body not just your calves. Throwing your leg up on a picnic table and bending into it is not a stretching routine.

Take your last potty break about 15 min before the race starts unless there is a big group and few porta-potties, then go earlier so your not standing in line and losing the effect of your warm up. What I usually do is while I'm doing my warm up walk I'll be scouting for a gas station with a bathroom or an out of the way porta-potty or building with a restroom at a park. Then I can use it just prior to going to the start.

When you are standing at the starting line. Breathe as deeply as possible and at the end of the exhale push with your diaphragm to get that last bit of stale air out of your lungs. Repeat slow deep breaths and exhales with a push right up to the starting gun. What your doing is getting your blood oxygen level as high as possible. I do this during a race also when I've gotten into a grove and I'm getting ready to make a move on a racer I want to pass. When your blood oxygen level is charged with the deep breaths you sort of turbo charge your muscles so you can get a little extra from them. It's short lived but it's enough to move up on someone.

You do not want to start panting like a dog with short shallow breaths, your re-breathing the same air since your not completely emptying your lungs and refilling with fresh oxygen. Your muscles are like engines they burn sugar but just like any burning if you take away the oxygen the fire goes out, but if you increase the oxygen the fire burns hotter.

Doing the right pre race warmup and breathing can give you a much stronger race.

Thanks for reading.

Racing Panda

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Set standards.

When we join a company we agree to adhere to their standards. When we belong to a religion we agree to follow the teaching that faith is based on. When we are part of a society we agree to obey that nations standards or face punishment. Why then can't we make that same kind of commitment to our own lives.

We can set standards to live by. We can agree not to smoke, not to eat deep fried food and on and on. Sit down with a tablet and pencil or your word processor and write out your own standards. Write down what you will not do, like eating a high fat snack after 8pm, get it down and be specific. Put it down on paper so you can see it. Imagine you are starting your own nation or company, write out the rules.

Then after you have written out your "Will not do" list, then work on your "Will do" list. Once again be specific. "I will be a positive example in what I do, If what I'm getting ready to do is not something I would want my children to do, I won't do it".

Once you have your lists of standards to live by, then work out a punishment and reward program. Things like if I resist a piece of cake at work I can buy a small gift for myself when I get off. Or I ate that piece of cake at work, I knew it was the wrong thing to do and as punishment I can't watch my favorite TV program tonight when I get home.

When you do a full week of living by your listed standards then reward yourself with a larger gift, like a date night with your spouse. Or punish yourself by being weak by scheduling a clean the closets or drawers in the kitchen night instead.

The whole idea here is not to treat yourself like a 10 year old but to stop doing the things that sabotage your best health and fitness efforts. It's a way to at least make yourself realize that you are doing something you promised yourself you wouldn't and maybe not do it the next time because of feeling guilty.

Be master of your actions and be your own example that you can control of your life.

Rambling Panda

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Why don't we believe what we tell our children?

We preach to our children that it's ok if we are not as pretty or as fast or as rich or a million other things as someone else. When we have kids ball teams they all get a trophy because we want to teach them that they are as important as anyone else on the team. Everyone contributed. When we have kids races everyone gets a ribbon or medal no matter what place they came in. We tell them that it's ok if they have birth defects, they are beautiful in their own way. It's ok that your hair won't comb right or your nose is to big, that is what makes you unique and special.

So why don't we buy into that concept ourselves? Once we are grown up all the teaching is out the window. Why/how can we tell our children that and not believe it for ourselves. One reason is we feel like we are competing against the rest of the whole world. Have you ever entered a room full of people and felt that you we the oldest, the fattest, the ugliest, the worst dressed, ect... We are constantly comparing ourselves to everyone else.

One of the basic truths is we are all created equal. Your thinking yea right, I can eat a flippin donut and gain 10 lbs and Barbie over there can eat a side of beef and still be a hard body. Well we are all different and like we tell our children that's what makes us special. We do all contribute to the world. We are all beautiful if we want to be. A good first step is to smile more often. Even a pretty person looks dull if they are frowning all the time.

We have to decide for ourselves that we are just as important as anyone else. Tell you a secret, you buy into it and believe it and others will believe it to. I'm sure everyone reading this knows people who aren't good looking or thin or rich or whatever but you respect them and think they are very special. You know others who are drop dead pretty or handsome but have no personality what so ever.

Maybe it's time we started teaching each other what we teach our children. It's ok to be different. What's not ok is to let ourselves go. Just because we are not as pretty or as rich as someone else doesn't mean we can't make the best of what we have. We can do what we can with the hand we were dealt. We can be a real example to our children and not just giving them false hope.

We are a group of people who are striving to make ourselves better with the body and mind we have. We are leading the way to real wellness, not just of body but of happiness. True happiness starts with accepting ourselves, our limitations and our potentials. When we can look in the mirror and say "Ok I have some extra fluff, but I'm working on it" we have the right attitude. We are all unique and special and we are all needed.

We can't change the whole world but we can change the way we look at our place in the world around us. We can expand on our strong points and not dwell on our limitations.

Rambling Panda

Sunday, July 12, 2009

I Don't Wanna!

One of our princesses, (I call all our ladies princesses because they are the warmth and softness that helps to smooth the rough edges of our lives, for that they deserve royal treatment), made a comment that it was easy to get out and go for a run or walk but it was hard to get motivated to lift weights.

I believe that is because running, walking, biking and swimming are natural activities. That side of us that isn't completely domesticated yet likes to get out and move. Lifting weight is not a natural activity, it's an extremely good way to build muscle but it's not something we would do normally. A few people would disagree with me but it's not fun either. We have fun when we go for a run, a walk, a ride or a swim, we are out in the fresh air seeing the sights and doing what he enjoy doing, moving free.

When we lift weights, in order for it to be a meaningful exercise we have to get past the fun stage and into the work stage. I have the same motivation issues with doing speed intervals. My fast walking over distance is fun, I'm enjoying it. But when I go to the track for speed intervals it becomes work, it's beneficial but it's hard work.

So what do we do about that problem. The extra things we need to do are to much like work and we can't seem to ever get motivated to do them even though they are probably just what we need to take our fitness and race times to a higher level? Good questions deserve quality answers.

First of all we need a new outlook on exercising for fitness and for building strength. A lot of people will go out and run or walk for the recommended 20 min 3 times a week and leave it at that. Are those people healthier for that, of course. But we are looking at things differently now right? We are not looking for the minimum to keep our risks of a heart attack lower, we are looking for fun, adventure and the thrill of racing, even if it's just racing against ourselves.

So with that new way of looking at our exercising how can we do the extra stuff that will make us stronger and keep it fun? Someone once said that when American runners want to get stronger they go to the gym, when a Kenyan runner wants to get stronger they go run some hills. Humm, building stronger legs by finding a route for your run or walk that has a few hills. That would be more fun than leg lifts right. How about running or walking on grass at a park or over fields, the softer surface makes you work harder and builds strength. How about hiking or trail running to add both the hills and the soft surface to build stronger legs. No place around where you live to hike? How about steep hills to walk up, or stairs.

If you think about it you can find ways to use your fun workouts to get a wider range of fitness. We can do our speed training by doing some accelerations during your walking and running. Speed up between power poles, then slow back to normal between the next to poles and repeat several times.

We can also get in some good total body training with everyday activities like hand washing the car instead of taking it to the car wash. Mowing with a push mower instead of a rider. Raking leaves is a great arm and back workout. Pushing a broom, vacuum or mop when your cleaning house is great upper body exercise. Just put a little extra effort into it and make it a workout.

Keep an open mind and look for ways to make your chores and workouts more effective and more fun.

Thanks for reading.

Rambling Panda

Proud Panda

Last night I was beaten in a race by someone I've been helping to train. Another one of the guys I have been training with won a walk race in another city. The driving force behind the Panda Endurance concept is to promote fitness and wellness but also to promote fast walking.

John Bingham championed the cause of making it be ok to be slow. He helped people realize that even the slowest runner is still an athlete. I want to promote that you don't have to run at all to be a serious athlete. You can be walker and still be a strong, fit athlete. The more people that take up fast walking the sooner it will be a mainstream sport like running, swimming and biking.

This area I live in, Southern Kentucky is fast becoming a Meca for fast walkers. We have a lot of races that are pure walking, separate from the run races. The competition is intense and most races will have several senior Olympians. Lately more younger athletes are getting into the fast walking as a change from running.

A walker can train exactly like a runner, with Long Slower walks to build endurance, short fast waking to build speed and the combination walks where you go a medium distance at a steadily increasing pace. Any run training method can be adapted to fast walk training.

One of the biggest benefits of the walking over running is that it's easier on the body, even though more muscles are used. A fast walker will burn at least as many calories in a workout as a runner putting out the same effort. Another plus for the walking is that recovery time from a hard workout is shorter. Especially when training for marathons, a runner doing a 20 mile training run is really trashing their muscles and that requires recovery, the older you are the longer the recovery period to. Training for senior athletes is much different, not in the types of training but in the recovery.

Big cheers for my walking buds who did good this weekend and for what you did for the sport. You never know how seeing you excel will inspire someone else to change their own fitness level and become a recreational athlete.

Thanks for reading.

Proud Panda

Friday, July 10, 2009

Money and Health

I was thinking last night about how interrelated money and health are in the world today. To start with, money gives us options, options we wouldn't have without it. A healthy body does the same, it gives us options. We can literally do things with a strong healthy body that we couldn't do without it. I'm not talking about just sports either but an endless range of activities. We can do everything we do in our daily lives, with more energy, if we keep our selves in good physical shape.

Money is the number one cause of stress in this country. Yep, tons of studies out there to back that up. Husbands and wives fuss over money even more than they argue about how to raise the children. What do people do when they are stressed, they eat or spend money, or both. It's a good bet that if your credit card debt is out of control so is your waistline.

Another interesting fact is that is that when times get tight, the health related stuff is cut back first, expenses like workout clothes, gym memberships and race related expenses are out the window. Then we eat to ease our stress and not the veggie burger either but comfort food. Did you know that since we went into this current economy crisis that fast food places are still doing super. Fast food, ice cream and movie rental stores are thriving, so are the sales of beer and cigarettes. Yep even with the mega taxes on cigarettes they are still selling well.

Now what is wrong with this picture? We are in a budget crunch and we can still afford to go to Wendy's or pick up a bucket of Kentucky Fried, but we can't swing a new pair of exercise shoes to replace the ones hurting our feet. I saw someone at the Minute Mart the other day, looked like a laborer worker of some sort and he was getting a sandwich and a coke then asked for a pack of cigarettes. Well when he found out the price of the smokes he put the sandwich back and just got the coke and the cigarettes.

Right now a lot of us are slapped silly by the economy. But we can't loose sight of what's really important. Remember this mess will end and wouldn't it be nice if it ended with us still having a healthy strong body instead of us weighing fifty more pounds and stressing about that also.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Mad Panda Grrrrrrr!

I know this isn't really a wellness post but in a way it is to. Part of being free and dealing with stress is to speak your mind. I'm thinking that poor Bankrupt Las Angles Calif shouldn't be footing the bill for all the crowd and traffic control for the Michael Jackson memorial and funeral. If you put on a race that isn't for a charity you usually have to pay for the police that are required to control traffic for your race. The news announcer said that is would require millions of dollars of overtime pay and take police officers away from the jobs they need to be doing. Jobs like protecting the citizens.

The city did put out a web site with a plea for donations to help with the cost. Hummm, the Jackson estate is worth over half a BILLION dollars, why the heck is that cost not coming from the Jackson estate.

I'm sure that the laid off city and state government workers who are losing their homes and life savings will understand that this is more important than them. Grrrrrrrr! They are going to have elephants there for Gods sake. This is a circus and a prime example of what's wrong with our country.

I have sent emails to Obama, my congressman and to Arnold. I'm just one old fellow with an attitude, but if enough people agree with me there may be hope for us yet.

Thanks for letting the Panda vent.

Mad Panda

Monday, July 6, 2009

Make each day count!

Every day that we do nothing but work, eat, watch TV or get on the computer is a day we have let get away. Think back the last few weeks can you remember something you did on each of those days that was, fun or exciting or interesting or even scary? We as civilized people have largely given up our physical life, everything now is geared for mental. When we go to work our bodies are just a case to take our brain to work, we do nothing really physical.

When the computer showed up on desks we no longer even had to get up to go to a file cabinet. Heck we don't even have to get up to change our TV channels. Every generation is required to move less and less to live. But is that living? Is our body becoming obsolete? Not no but HELL NO it's not!

If we want to just go through the motions of being alive, just exist, then we can pretty much do without our bodies, it just has to take us to the car and in and out of buildings. But there are several things wrong with this. First it's not living it's existing. We need to move, we need to have our body strong. Everything we do from making love to playing in the park with the kids to competing in sports requires a strong healthy body.

Our health is up to us, we have a lot better chance of fighting off every disease and condition that can afflict us if we are strong and healthy. We have a lot less chance of getting the bad stuff to begin with if we are active and healthy. If we all ate better and exercised more and had a more interesting, fun life we would pretty much see the end of everything from type 2 diabetes to depression.

Most of the people who read this have already bought into the need for a healthy life style but we all need to help the people we care about get involved. Plan family trips to places where you can hike and play and and have fun in motion.

Thanks for reading.

Healthy Living Panda

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Dare to Dream

When you dare to dream you can see your self not just as you are now but as you can be. Some of the greatest people in history were just ordinary people who could see them selves making a difference in the world.

There are so many things wrong with our nation and our world right now that we need heroes, not the heroes that ride in on a white horse and shoot the bad guys with silver bullets, but ordinary people who are willing to be good examples. We are in the middle of a health care crisis that we created by over eating, consuming chemicals and not exercising. Be a light in the darkness. Dream of your self being an example of a better way.

Don't worry that you are out there in front of God and everybody walking or running when you are carrying a lot of extra fluff. You are a point of hope for others who have been afraid to be seen exercising because of their own fluff.

Be an outspoken voice against the filth that is clogging the Internet. Our cyber world is a wonderful place, but it's also a playground for people with no morals. We need to say "Hell No" to the people who are doing horrible things to other people, videoing it and posting it on the net. When you see that kind of crap email your congressmen and senators, email the attorney general. Express your displeasure to everyone you can think of. Don't be silent, be a voice for what's right.

Tell the people who are on the front lines you are proud of them. Tell your child's teacher that you know how much courage it takes to be responsible for our future generations learning. Wave at the policeman you see driving their routes, let them know you support them. If you know someone who has a son or daughter serving in the military, let them know you are proud of them.

We are all such a tiny part of our world but if enough of us try just a little harder to be more involved we can begin to make a difference. But it all starts with each one of us dreaming that we can be better and take the steps to improve our selves.

Thanks for reading.

Dream Panda

Friday, July 3, 2009

Natural Power!

When you walk into a Vitamin and Supplement store you see row after row of wiz-bang, latest and greatest miracles. You are assured that if you take this or that your arms and chest will grow and your waist will shrink to a ripped band of tight muscle. Just spend enough money and you can have the body you have always dreamed of.

I spent many years working with training programs for military personnel. Now let me tell you something about the military. There is a tremendous amount of research that goes into building our warriors. The Human performance Lab in Dallas, under the wing of Kenneth Cooper has been an advisor to the military since the 70s. Well guess what? There are no, that's right you heard it here first, there are no supplements that are better for making you stronger, faster and more agile that good wholesome food, plenty of pure water and hard exercise.

We are victims of the power of advertising. Those supplements are only good for building the bank accounts of the manufactures of supplements. Now I know you are going to hear from people that are going to swear that a chemical mixture helped them grow bigger muscles, well they probably took the supplement and ate properly along with hard work at the gym. It wasn't the supplement but the good food and hard work.

These chemical mixes are not regulated and are often found later to actually be harmful. That product that we saw on the TV ads so often, Hydroxy Cut, has been linked to several health problems. Listen to the panda don't use the supplements. Take that money you would spend for supplements and use it for good exercise shoes and a membership at a health club, not on a magic potion.

Now I know I'm going to step on toes here but I wouldn't recommend anything except a name brand multi vitamin. Everything else is a waste of your money and could be dangerous. If you must take something, make an appointment with your doctor and discuss it with them. I think you will find that the majority of them would agree with me that good food is the best supplement. I had the opportunity to work with the full knowledge of a large military hospital and discuss this with doctors of all specialties, I found none that suggested a mix of chemicals over a proper diet in conjunction with regular exercise.

Thanks for reading.

Natural Panda

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Yes I can!

There is a saying that if you have the right attitude that everything is possible. That's is true to an extent, being positive with take you further than being negative. But no amount of positive thinking will help you do something that's just not going to happen. I can be positive that a pro ball team will discover me while I'm working out at the gym and offer me a million dollar contract, but it ain't happening. I can be positive I'll wake up tomorrow so pretty that I'll be the next movie star heart throb, but I won't.

But when we put that positive thinking to work on something that really is possible, then it's magic. You may not be the next action hero but you can get and stay in good physical condition. You can with the right attitude and the proper action do some amazing things. Walking or running regularly probably won't make you a super star but it can take you places you never imagined possible. Several of my friends have with just a regular walking or running program and eating more healthy completed marathons and even ultras.

Positive attitudes along with the powerful spirit we all possess to overcome the road blocks that life throws at us will allow you to do a lot. You have to start with a "Yes I can" attitude and then make it happen. You have to be a bit of a dreamer and keep the dream going. If you just say I'm going to lose 10 lbs, that's a good short term goal but you can't look at that as the finish line but as another milestone on a larger journey. The journey I speak of is a long healthy life, a life filled with joy and accomplishment.

As we get older we have to adapt and adjust our outlook at what we are capable of but we can't sell ourselves short either. We have to give a little ground but we still need that, "Yes I can", attitude. Eating right, getting regular exercise and enjoying life isn't something we have to give up as age, with the right attitude, proper preparation and realistic expectations we can continue to have awesome times.

Every January a lot of people with that, "Yes I can", attitude gather at Walt Disney World for a celebration of health, fitness and life. The magic and the energy flowing there has to be experienced to be believed. We need to carry a little of that magic with us every day. Keep saying to yourself, "I can do this", and then make it happen.

Thanks for reading.

Rambling Panda