Figure Skater Peggy Fleming: Getting a Grip on Stress

Peggy FlemingOlympic figure skating champion Peggy Fleming has teamed up with a company called Health Saver. Below Peggy Fleming and Health Saver offer some practical tips for getting a grip on stress and for getting back on a healty lifestyle track if you have veered off a little.

Peggy Fleming says, “Plan a ‘self make-over’ for better health, improved fitness, less stress and more time for yourself to reach your goal and achieve significant success in 2008. To lose weight, incorporate physical activity into your daily routine and establish a smart diet. A balance between calories consumed and calories burned will leave you looking and feeling your best.”

Get a Grip on Stress

  • Nearly half of all Americans say stress has a negative impact on
    their lives, according to the American Psychological Association.
    Vow today to conquer stressful situations with a renewed ability to
    cope.

  • Change the way you deal with situations that trigger stress. For
    example, if your five o’clock errands leave you feeling overwhelmed,
    avoid the late afternoon bustle by tackling errands during your lunch
    break.

  • There’s no use in being bothered by problems you can’t change.
    Instead, spend your energy on changes you can make.

  • Accept that adjustments often mean a change in standards. If your
    money woes mean no annual beach vacation, embrace vacation as a time
    to spend with your family rather than a time to get away.

  • Two-thirds of physician visits are due to stress-related symptoms.
    Take hold of your health by adopting effective stress prevention
    practices. Listen to music, read an article or take a quick walk —
    physically active people tend to have less anxiety.

  • An optimistic mindset will help you better handle stress. When you
    carve out time to do something for yourself, you’ll have a better
    attitude about meeting your daily responsibilities. Time for
    yourself is necessary, even if the things you do during this time are
    seen as “less pressing” than other duties.

    Be Efficient

  • If “there are not enough hours in the day” is a phrase you’re all too
    familiar with, learn to be more efficient with your time. A To Do
    list is an easy way to simplify your life. Equipped with a plan,
    you’ll feel more in control.

  • Put your To Do list in order of priority. Tackle the more demanding
    tasks when your energy is at its peak. If you keep delaying the
    dreaded garage clean-up, force yourself to organize the garage for 10
    minutes. You may find that once you’ve started, you’re on a roll.

  • Divide time-consuming projects into smaller tasks. Reading “Fix
    attic leak” on your To Do list can be a bit intimidating. Instead,
    write “(1) Call plumber, (2) allocate money within budget” and so on.

  • Delegate responsibilities. You don’t have to do it all on your own.
  • Learn to say no. Before you agree to take on additional
    responsibilities, consider what you will or will not gain from the
    extra task. If you want to spend more time with your family in 2008,
    politely decline invitations that keep you from reaching that goal.

    Get Back on Track

  • It’s never too late to jump back into the active lifestyle that may
    have gotten away from you last year. Keep muscles strong now and
    you’re more likely to live longer and stay sharp in your later years.

  • Stay active and you not only reduce your risk of heart disease, but
    also increase your ability to fight depression.

  • According to the U.S. Department of Health, 60 percent of Americans
    do not participate in the recommended 30 minutes of physical activity
    five or more days a week, putting them at greater risk for cancer,
    diabetes and stroke. Squeeze in your 30 minutes of exercise in three
    10-minute intervals throughout the day.

    Fresh Fare

  • Three out of five Americans are overweight, and face an increased
    risk for high blood pressure. Vow to adopt a well-balanced diet with
    maximum nutrients for your calorie intake.

  • Healthier eating could reduce cancer deaths in the United States by
    35 percent. Fill your plate with more vegetables than meats and
    carbohydrates. Then, each week, make a small change, such as
    switching from soda to water or trading cookies for fruit as an
    afternoon snack.

  • Portion sizes can be deceptive. Aim for food portions no larger than
    your fist.

  • Quit eating on the go. Your brain needs 20 minutes to register that
    your stomach is full. To avoid binge eating, eat before you get too
    hungry.

  • At the grocery, pay attention to nutrition labels. Stay clear of any
    foods that contain more than 20 percent of your daily fat intake.
    Also use a grocery list — and stick to it — to avoid the impulse
    buys that may add empty calories to your diet.

  • You probably learned at an early age, but may have lost sight of diet
    rule No. 1: Eat your fruits and vegetables. The more fruits and
    vegetables you eat per day, the less likely you are to develop
    cardiovascular disease.

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