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The Sequoia Advisor

IN THIS ISSUE                                                       February 1st 2012

  • Learn To Sleep Like a Baby
  • Taking The "Routine" Out of Your Fitness
  • NEW Workshops at Dream Yoga Studio
  • Hospice Care for Pets
  • Osteoporosis Support News
  • The RestonPatch Hosts My NEW Blog

Feel Better... Live Better

Learn to Sleep Like a Baby
By Woody McMahon

Sleep Like a Baby
Some experts say that Americans are a sleep deprived society with our
constant communication and 24 hour television shows.
These days, many
people are having trouble getting
a restful sleep. A lack of sleep
deteriorates your physical and mental performance very quickly. Without a
good night's sleep, you are more likely to experience depression, acute and
chronic pain, reduced energy, lack of concentration, high blood pressure
and increased physical and mental stress. You also place yourself at a
greater risk for accidents.

The Natural Sleep Cycle
According to the National Sleep Foundation, only about 50% of us get a
good night's sleep. A recent poll of older adults found a direct
correlation between good health and restful sleep. The better the health of
the older adults, the more likely they were to sleep well. Conversely, the
greater the number of diagnosed medical conditions, the more likely they
were to report sleep problems. The poll also revealed that among older
adults, a more positive mood and outlook as well as an active and "engaged"
lifestyle (having someone to speak with about a problem, regular exercise,
volunteer activity, etc.) was associated with sleeping 7-9 hours and having
fewer sleep complaints.

Chemically Induced Sleep
Medication for sleep has become very popular but no one really knows if
this "chemically induced" sleep is as beneficial as the naturally occurring
kind. According to the Mayo Clinic, medications like Ambien, Lunesta, and
Rozerem subject you to various side effects including dizziness, weight
gain, facial swelling, headache, prolonged drowsiness and severe allergic
reaction. They also may not be safe if you have severe depression, history
of drug or alcohol dependency, are pregnant, breast feeding or exhibit
sleep behaviors such as sleep-driving and sleep-eating.

Simple Steps to Getting a Restful Sleep

Step 1: The first step to getting a restful sleep is to balance physical
and mental fatigue.
At the end of the day, many people are more mentally
than physically tired. Regular physical activity like walking, working out at
the gym or playing a sport will help you feel both mentally and physically

Step 2: The next step is to consciously turn off your day before you go to
sleep. Reading a book with a strong positive message, listening to quieting
music or taking a few moments to meditate before sleep sets the right mood.
On the other hand, watching television especially if it has violent or disturbing
content activates rather than quiets your brain.

Step 3: Finally, resting during the day either by napping or just relaxing
in a chair keeps you from getting over-tired. Some experts believe that
allowing ourselves to rest maybe more important in the long run than sleep.
Rest happens when you allow yourself the time to sit and do nothing. This
is very difficult for most people because of the way they were brought up.
Resting when you are tired is an act of self kindness and has a profound
de-stressing effect on the mind and body. If you feel guilty about resting,
this sends stressful messages to your mind and body promoting long term
disease and illness.

Relax More
There are many ways to relax; here are a few. meditation, watching a
sunset, listening to the roar of the ocean, mindful breathing, watching the
birds fly around your backyard or enjoying relaxing music. Make the time
and allow yourself adequate sleep and relaxation. It is the healthy way to
recharge your body and mind while feeling and looking your best.

For more information on how to feel more rested, contact the National
Sleep Foundation at

Would you like to improve your health but don't know where to start?
How about an exercise program that alleviates pain and strengthens your
bones? Do you have weight problems but are tired of dieting? I provide
an easy to follow program without the gimmicks or fads. You'll also get the
education, motivation and accountability necessary to improve your health
while helping you feel and look your best. Please call Woody McMahon for a no
cost consultation, at 703-628-2880 or email to

Taking The "Routine" Out of Your Fitness
by Woody McMahon

Routine Eventually Means Boring
Whomever coined the phrase "fitness routine" didn't realize that they were
actually capturing the true essence of most people's exercise programs.
Routine, defined as having no special quality or ordinary, has no place in
your exercise program. When it comes to your fitness program, you want
to maximize the number of different types of exercises you are performing.
If your exercise program is going to prepare you for the greatest possible
number of real life scenarios, keep "routine" out of your workouts. Why is
exercise variety so important for maximum benefits?

Your Muscles Like Variety
Your muscles adapt very quickly to movement patterns and postures. A
variety of different exercises trains your muscles in different patterns
and sequences. Once your muscles have learned a particular movement
pattern, it is not enough just to lift more weight in that same muscle
sequence. This is because when lifting a child or box, playing a sport or
getting in and out of the car, you rarely
repeat the exact same movement
twice in your life. In most of these examples, well trained movement
patterns are more important than pure strength. To be prepared for as many
of these infinite movements as possible, your fitness program should
include lots of variety.

Keeping Your Fitness From Being Routine
Here are three simple and effective suggestions to maximize exercise
benefits and keep your workout program from getting anything but routine.

Suggestion 1: Switch From Machines to Free Weights
Free weights offer a unique exercise opportunity to improve strength,
balance and coordination all at the same time. Take for example the seated
shoulder press. Try the same exercise but stand instead of sit while
you perform the pressing motion. Standing makes more muscles work
simultaneously; as if you were putting something in a tall kitchen cabinet.
Instead of just arm and shoulder muscles working, now you have leg, core
and balance muscles strengthening as well. When you get really good, you
can try one arm and one leg to challenge your balance even more.

Suggestion 2: Challenge Your Balance Regularly
Including balance activities in your exercise program increases both the
mental and physical challenge of your workout. Balance is learned when you
are young and it can deteriorate if not practiced regularly. Especially as
you get older, good balance is something that only comes with practice.
Your ability to balance is reduced by prolonged sitting, weak leg muscles
and poor eyesight. Try adding exercises that you can perform on one leg and
also consider including fitness toys like the BOSU, foam half roll and
balance boards. These exercises are both fun and add a new dimension of
physical and mental challenge.

Suggestion 3: Try Exercise Combinations
Exercise combinations are one of the best ways to add variety and reduce
your time spent exercising. Taking several exercises that would normally be
performed individually and doing them simultaneously is a great physical and
mental challenge. For example, let's look at the squat, biceps curl and
shoulder press. You could do all three of these exercises separately or
combine them into one fluid movement. With arms at your side, start by
lowering yourself into a squat. Now as you come back to the starting
position, keep your knees bent and perform a biceps curl. At the top of the
curl, press both arms straight above your head. Just reverse the sequence
back to the starting position.

Try these simple suggestions and watch how much more mentally and
physically challenging your workouts can become. If you are not sure where
to start, give me a call for suggestions and direction.

Try these healthy lifestyle changes for 30 days. Feel what it is like to be
a part of the health solution rather than a health burden. If you need
additional suggestions and advice on living a healthier lifestyle, email or

call me for a no cost consultation, at 703-628-2880 or email to

NEW Workshops at Dream Yoga Studio

Announcing an exciting new health partnership for 2012.
Luann Fulbright, the owner of Dream Yoga Studio asked me to offer
three of my signature Fresh Start!TM programs in workshop format.
The workshops bring you practical and valuable information to help
kick-start your health and fitness program for the New Year.
Each workshop is followed by an 8 week series of continuation
classes. These classes help
you learn new skills and get the support
need to more easily accomplish your health and fitness goals
for 2012.

Dream Yoga Studio and Wellness Center is located in McLean, VA.
Luann and I thought that my Be Bone Strong!TM, Healthy Weight!TM
and Posture Perfect!TM programs would fit nicely with her ever
expanding wellness vision and class offerings. You can learn
more about the interesting and diverse offerings at Dream Yoga

and Wellness Studio at

Here is the workshop schedule starting in January of 2012.

Healthy Weight!TM Workshop Jan 21st from 2 to 5 pm
This workshop is a great way to kick-start your weight loss program for
the New Year.
The insights you gain in Healthy Weight!TM will make this
your final weight loss effort. Period! 
Losing weight is much easier when you
recognize and eliminate the real cause of weight gain... stress overeating.
Learning to work with your body yields faster and longer lasting results
eliminating diet frustration and stress. Healthy Weight!TM Workshop
teaches you a simple, easy to follow system that eliminates the need for
calorie counting, special diets, extreme Boot Camp workouts and unhealthy
supplements. It also designed to compliment your existing yoga practice
if you have one. Handouts Provided.

Posture Perfect!TM Workshop February 18th from 2 to 4 pm
The New Year is a great time to start looking and feeling your best.
Posture Perfect!TM is a safe and effective program based on clinically
proven exercises that will have you standing taller, sitting straighter and
sleeping sounder. Woody's program offers you a simple, easy-to-follow
system that improves posture, balance, strength while reducing stress in
as little as 10 minutes a day. It's also designed to compliment an existing
yoga practice, if you have one; boost your energy; and improve self-
confidence and body image. Posture Perfect!TM provides the tools and
support you need to successfully change how you look and feel.
Handouts Provided.

Be Bone Strong!TM Osteoporosis Workshop March 17th from 2 to 5 pm
This 3-hour workshop offers a complete, personalized bone and joint
health program that nicely compliments your yoga practice, if you have
one. Be Bone Strong! goes beyond just increasing bone density, and clearly
and easily teaches you a step-by- step process to improve bone health.
Some of the topics that will be covered are eating for a stronger body,
stress and bone health, vitamin D essentials, reducing inflammation for
healthier bones, and bone health exercise strategies. Based on the
principals and teaching of the Meeks MethodTM; this is the only program of
it's kind in the Northern, VA area. This workshop is a good introduction
to Woody's 8-Week "Be Bone Strong" Mini-Course that starts at
Dream Yoga on Mar 22.

If you have questions or need more information please contact
me at or call 703.628.2880. 

Pets and People

Hospice Care for Pets
By Ingrid King

As veterinary care for pets is becoming more and more sophisticated and
as more pet owners understand the importance of a lifetime of preventive
care, pets live longer lives. But despite all of that, pets still get
sick, and when they do, there are often numerous treatment options.
However, some illnesses are considered terminal, and in the past,
euthanasia was often the only option pet owners would consider at that
stage. An alternative to premature euthanasia that is garnering more
attention in the world of pet care is hospice care.

The definition of a terminal illness is an illness for which there is no
cure. It is an active, progressive, irreversible illness with a fatal
prognosis. Hospice care provides a loving alternative to prolonged
suffering and is designed to give supportive care to cats in the final
phase of a terminal illness. The goal is to keep the cat comfortable and
free of pain, with a focus on quality of life and living each day as fully
as possible.

The decision to stop treatment and begin hospice care can be made at any
point in the progression of a terminal illness. Decisions may range from
choosing to forgo aggressive surgery after receiving a cancer diagnosis
because of a poor prognosis, discontinuing chemotherapy or radiation
because the pet is either not responding or is dealing with side-effects
that are rapidly diminishing his quality of life, or discontinuing
medications because medicating the pet is difficult or impossible for the
pet owner. Rather than opting for euthanasia, pet owners may choose to
provide hospice care for their pet.

Hospice care is not a last resort, and is not about giving up, or about
dying. It's about finding ways to live with a terminal illness, and it may
actually involve providing more care and not less. The decision to provide
hospice care should be made in conjunction with your veterinarian, who
will become an integral partner in the process.

Hospice care involves the following:

Comfort: Provide clean, soft bedding with easy access to food, litter
boxes, favorite sleeping spots and interaction with family members. Handle
pets gently because many terminal medical conditions create discomfort and

Nutrition and Hydration: Provide easy access to food and water. You may
need to experiment with special foods to tempt ill pets. In addition to
feeding a high quality, grain-free canned or raw diet (if you pet is
immuno-compromised, raw food is not recommended) diet, you may need to
offer foods such as meat-based baby food (make sure that there is no onion
powder in the brand you buy), for cats, tuna juice or flakes of tuna
spread on top of the cat's regular food, and slightly warming the food to
increase palatability. Make sure the pet always has fresh water available.

Cleanliness: Sick pets may not be able to groom themselves. Assist your
pet with this by gently brushing, and keeping eyes, ears, the area around
the mouth and around the rectum and genetalia clean if she can't do it by
herself anymore.

Pain Management: Pets, especially cats, are good at hiding pain. Watch
your pet for signs of pain - subtle signs may involve hiding, avoiding
contact with family members, or changes in sleeping positions. Cats will
rarely vocalize when they're in pain. Work with your veterinarian to
develop an appropriate pain control program for your pet.

Holistic Therapies: There are many non-invasive, gentle holistic
therapies that can provide relief to terminally ill pets. Energy therapies
such as Reiki, Healing Touch, Tellington Touch and others are particularly

Despite the logistic and emotional challenges hospice care presents for
pets and their humans, it can also be a time of great peace and increased
bonding with your beloved animal companion. It also allows for a gentle
preparation for the impending loss for both pet and human. Diagnosis of a
terminal illness does not have to be the end - it can be the beginning of
a deepening, peaceful, final phase of life for both pet and human.

(c) Ingrid King 2012

Ingrid King is a former veterinary hospital manager turned writer. She is

the author of Buckley's Story - Lessons from a Feline Master Teacher. Her
online magazine News for You and Your Pet goes out to subscribers around
the world. Her blog, The Conscious Cat, has been called "educational cat
nip for the cat lover" and is a comprehensive resource for conscious
living, health and happiness for pets and their people. For more
information about Ingrid, please visit

Osteoporosis Support News

2012 Osteoporosis Resource Center's (ORC) Classes

The ORC is unique in the Northern Virginia area offering safe and effective
exercise classes including Personal Training, Yoga, Tai Chi and
Posture Perfect!TM We also offer classes and consultations for people with
osteoporosis, osteopenia, back, hip and neck pain as well as other
bone and joint health problems.

"What makes the ORC unique is that it offers safe and effective exercise
programs that can help improve posture, balance and strength for bone
and joint health problems" says Woody McMahon one of the center's
co-directors. "For the first time people that come to the center can feel
comfortable that the exercises they are performing will only do good and
not cause any harm. "

Who Benefits From Our Classes
Beginners: Our unique classes are great for someone who wants to begin
a safe and effective exercise program but does not know where to start.

Post Rehabilitation:
Our classes offer a safe and effective transition from
physical therapy to more general exercise helping to safely strengthen
important stability muscles.

The classes are perfect for tennis players, golfers or runners
who want to enhance their bodies to improve their sport.

Current Class Schedule

Tai Chi for Osteoporosis
When: Mondays and Wednesdays 1:30-2:30 PM
Where: Qi Elements Center, 464 Herndon Parkway, Suite 215, Herndon, VA
Tuition: $105 for one class a week, $190 for both classes
Email or call Roger 703 435-4400 for more

NEW Yoga for Boomers & Beyond
When: Mondays 6:45PM to 8PM
Where: Qi Elements Center, 464 Herndon Parkway, Suite 215, Herndon, VA
Tuition: $154 for one class a week for 7 weeks
Email or call Bonnie at
703-407-2065 for more information.

Posture Perfect!TM Level 1 Class
When: Mondays 7:00PM to 8PM for 7 Weeks
Where: Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc. 483 Carlisle Drive, Herndon, VA
Tuition: $140 for one class a week for 7 weeks
Email or call Woody at
703-628-2880 for more information.

Newsletter Sign-Up
Sign-up for our FREE newsletter The Sequoia Advisor to stay informed
about all of our future class offerings, workshops and seminars. It is
easy... just go to and enter your
name and email address.

We look forward to seeing you soon at one of our classes.
Please call Woody McMahon at 703-628-2880 or email to for more information.

People in The News

RestonPatch Hosts My NEW Blog

My new health and fitness blog is being hosted by The RestonPatch.
This is another excellent way for me to get valuable health and fitness
information out to you. To read my new blog go to

Posture Perfect!TM Classes
Posture Perfect!TM classes are a great way to improve posture,
balance and strength especially if you have a health problem
requiring special attention.
Each one hour class is designed to help
improve your posture, balance and strength. The exercises are
based on the The Meeks MethodTM, created by Sara Meeks, PT
to safely build bone and muscle, improve posture and balance
and relieve back pain.

According to Sara Meeks "Abdominal crunches, sit-ups, and other
common exercises that bend the spine can cause back pain and even
spinal fractures. It's frightening that most people with low bone mass
are not aware of it," Meeks says. "They think osteoporosis is a disease
that only affects older Caucasian women."

Please contact us to find out when the next Posture Perfect!TM class starts.
If you would like to host a
Posture Perfect!TM  class at your church,
synagogue or office please contact Woody McMahon
at or by phone at 703.628.2880.

Continued Good Health,


Woody McMahon
The Sequoia Advisor

Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.
483A Carlisle Drive
Herndon, VA

Required Disclaimer: The material provided herein should not be construed
as a health-care diagnosis, treatment regimen or any other prescribed
health-care advice or instruction. The material is provided with the
understanding that the publisher is not engaged in the practice of medicine
or any other health-care profession and does not enter into a health-care
practitioner/patient relationship with its readers. The publisher does not
advise or recommend to its readers treatment or action with regard to
matters relating to their health or well-being other than suggesting that
readers consult appropriate health-care professionals in such matters. No
action should be taken based solely on the content of this publication. The
material and opinions provided herein are believed to be accurate and sound
at the time of publication, based on the best judgment available to the
authors. However, readers who rely on material in this publication to
replace the advice of health-care professionals, or who fail to consult
with health-care professionals, assume all risks of such conduct. The
publisher is not responsible for errors or omissions.

Copyright (c) 2006-2012 by Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.


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    A mindful and holistic approach to Fall Prevention, Balance, Full Body Functional Strengthening and Posture Exercises for All Ages! Our Science-Based Exercises are Safe and Appropriate for Your Ability. Our Exercises Help Improve Osteoporosis, Osteopenia, Fear of Falling, Balance and Strength Problems. Reston, Great Falls, Herndon, Middleburg, Arlington Sterling and Northern Virginia.

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