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The Sequoia Advisor

IN THIS ISSUE                                                       May 15th 2011

  • Three Easy Ways to Reduce Stress
  • Core Essentials
  • NV Osteoporosis Resource Center Opens Soon!
  • Elements of a Thorough Physical Exam for Your Pet
  • New Updates on the Marodyne LIV Tablet
  • Kate's My Healthy Way Blog

Feel Better... Live Better

Three Easy Ways to Reduce Stress
By Woody McMahon

You live in a fast paced world; one your body or mind was never designed
to successfully handle. The relentless fast pace that just about everyone
is keeping contributes to the ever increasing number of stress related
illnesses. Heart disease, osteoporosis, sleep disorders, weight gain and
back pain can all be traced to a high stress lifestyle. When asked, the
number one attribute most people would like to change about their lives
is the pace. So the next time you catch yourself running from here to there
and everywhere in between, consider the negative effects you are having
on your health.

The Damaging Effects of Too Much Cortisol
Prolonged "rat racing" causes cortisol, a stress hormone, to build-up in
the blood preventing your immune, cardiovascular, skeletal and
digestive systems from working properly. High cortisol levels can also keep
you from losing or maintaining a healthy weight; give you low energy and
make you feel tired; raise your blood pressure; prevent your bones from
strengthening properly, make it difficult to sleep and can contribute to
depression. Over time, stress destroys your body's ability to function
properly and if left unchecked, can actually shorten your life. So what do
you do if you feel rushed and anxious all the time? What is the best way to
reduce stress and get more enjoyment out of your life? How do you stay
active but not too active?

Try these three practical steps that can greatly reduce
your stress levels and help you live a longer and healthier

Step 1 Simplify Your Lifestyle
If you find yourself running around in a tizzy and realize that you have
over scheduled your life, consider simplification. Approaching life like there
is no tomorrow leaves little time for enjoyment. If you want to live life
to the fullest, you must also enjoy it to the fullest. Being constantly
scheduled means just going through the motions and turning stressful
events into stressful days. The first step to simplification is to begin writing
down your schedule and seeing if it looks reasonable. Is there time for a
healthy breakfast? What about a lunch where you actually sit down and
eat; not standing in front of your desk or doing something else at the
same time?

Have you left time for some fun physical activity; a nice walk with a friend
or maybe a stop at your favorite health club? Have someone else look at
your schedule and if they say, "Wow, that looks kind of busy" then you
need to go back and remove something from that day to slow it down.
Remember, the emphasis is on enjoyment and not on getting things done.

Step 2 Daily Meditation
If your mind is running at "100 miles a minute" then your body, even when
you are sitting still, will try to keep up. Constantly bombarding your body
with the "100 miles a minute" messages sends it into full cortisol
overdrive. True physical relaxation comes when the mind slows down and lets
your body relax. Daily meditation is a great way to quiet your mind, relax
your body and reduce cortisol levels to improve how you look and feel. In
just 5 minutes a day, you can start a good meditation habit. Here's how.

Find a quiet spot and then sit in a comfortable chair with your feet flat
on the floor. Close your eyes and allow your mind to get calm and slow
down. If just closing your eyes doesn't work, you can concentrate on a
candle flame or your breathing as a way to center your attention. A great
little book to help you is called "Meditation, A Beginner's Guide" by
Charlotte Parnell.

Step 3 Make Time to Get Physically Active
When it comes to activity, the old saying "different strokes for different
folks" comes to mind. Don't be tricked by the myth that there is only one
right activity. Forget the "more reps for toning" or "the fat burning zone"
misinformation as well. The key to reducing stress is to find enjoyable
activities and then stick with them. You can dance, ride a bike, chase your
dog or kid, lift some weights at the health club or swim a few laps.

The bottom line; find something that is fun; something you like to do,
something you will keep doing. It's not important if you're any good at it.
In other words, don't let perfectionism or what other people might think
stand in the way of having some fun with your friends. Adopt and practice
these three stress reduction tools and your life will be less stressful and
a whole lot more fun.

Would you like to reduce stress and improve your bone health but
don't know where to start?
I provide an easy to follow program called
Be Bone Strong! that helps improve your bone health, posture, balance
and strength while reducing fracture risk. Contact me anytime for a
no cost consultation at 703-628-2880 or email to

More Effective Ways to Strengthen Your Core
by Woody McMahon

Core Function
Your core is a group of important muscles whose main job is to stabilize
your spine and pelvis when you are moving during work or play. The core
muscles are also responsible for helping with good posture allowing us to
sit and stand up straight with less effort. When you say core, most people
think about the abdominal muscles. But in reality, there are many more
muscles involved than just the abdominal group. The muscles of the lower
back, pelvis and diaphragm all play an important part in spinal

Core Important to Posture
Without your core muscles, your body would be too flexible and unable to
hold itself upright making walking a challenge. It would be impossible to
lift or move during work or play because your spine would want to fold
right in half. A healthy, natural posture would be nearly unattainable
because your lower and upper body could not work effectively together.
The core provides the necessary body stabilization that allows you to
move safely through many different directions and actions.

Training the Core
Training the core is best accomplished in the standing position. This is
the position that you will commonly use when lifting and moving during work
and play. Any exercises performed standing will by their nature help
strengthen your core. For certain people, especially if standing is painful
or balance is an issue, core strengthening while lying down is also
beneficial. A combination of standing and lying down core strengthening is
very helpful especially if you have back pain, osteoporosis, shoulder, hip
or knee problems.

Suggested Core Exercises

Try adding these two core exercise to your fitness program
and feel how much stronger and more stable you become.

1. Standing Row: This is great exercise that is performed standing and
really works the entire body including the core. You can perform this
exercise with a pulley machine or some bands. Facing the machine, stand
with your knees bent, back straight and head up. Slowly pull the weight
towards your chest as you breathe out. As you pull, squeeze your abdominal
and gluteal (butt) muscles. The squeezing action will help to both
strengthen your core muscles as well as increase the safety of the exercise
by stabilizing your spine and pelvis.

2. Walking Lunge and Press: The lunge is an exaggerated stepping
motion that forces the core muscles to work harder just to maintain your
upright posture. Adding the press to the lunge makes your upper and lower
body work as a team creating both a balance and a lifting challenge. Take one
dumbbell and place it at ear level. The take a bigger than normal step
forward keeping your knees slightly bent, back straight and head up.

Once you are balanced, breathe out and press the weight above your head
keeping the elbow slightly bent. Return the weight to the ear level and take
your next step forward with the opposite foot. Repeat 6 to 8 times with first
one arm and then the other. These exercises will stimulate not only the core
but your whole body. Add them to your current workout and watch your
balance and stability improve.

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

Osteoporosis Support News

Osteoporosis Resource Center Opens Soon!

The Northern Virginia Osteoporosis Resource Center is scheduled to
open sometime early this September. It will be one the first of its kind
offering BoneSafeTM clinics, activity classes and consultations for people
with osteoporosis, osteopenia and other bone health problems.

You can read more about The NV Osteoporosis Resource Center at: resource center

Don't forget about our new Posture Perfect! classes that  are forming
right now
for 2011. Please call Woody McMahon at 703-628-2880 or
email to for more information, class times
and reservations.

Pets and People 

Elements of a Thorough Physical Exam for Your Pet
By Nancy Kay, DVM

Have you ever gone to the doctor and realized after
the visit that those healing hands never actually touched your body?
C'mon now, that's not okay! Nor is it okay for your veterinarian to
skimp when it comes to examining your pet. In veterinary school, we are
taught to perform a thorough physical examination on each and every
patient. It would be a travesty to miss a new heart murmur or enlarged
lymph node on a patient that presented for limping. The sooner
abnormalities are detected the more likely we are to gain an upper

Listed below are the elements of a thorough physical examination for
your dog or cat. Bear in mind, it takes no more than a minute or two
for a seasoned vet to competently complete the following (by the way,
it helps if you are not talking when the stethoscope is being used!):

  • Assessment of overall alertness and appearance
  • Evaluation of gait
  • Evaluation of the skin and haircoat
  • Measurement of body weight, temperature, heart rate, respiratory rate,
    and capillary refill time (the time it takes for the gum line to become pink
    after it has been blanched by finger pressure)
  • Examination of the eyes, ears, nose, and oral cavity
  • Palpation of lymph nodes
  • Palpation of the thyroid gland (specific for cats)
  • Auscultation of the heart and lungs (listening with a stethoscope) on
    both sides of the chest
  • Palpitation of the abdomen
  • Rectal examination (specific for dogs that are middle aged and older)

Vets perform physical exams differently in terms of order of events.
No matter in the least as long as everything is included. And please
remember, such thorough exams are not to be reserved for only the
annual office visit. If your kitty is vomiting or your dog has an ear
infection, you should expect the whole shebang (although your dog or
cat would probably prefer a mini-exam).

(c) Ingrid King 2011

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

Marodyne LIV Tablet Update

Sara and I are just about ready to start recording our 24 Podcasts
for the LIVe Again! Podcast series. For your enjoyment, this
will come FREE with every LIV Tablet. This is a great bone
health audio series that really helps to simplify, demystify and
make your bone health program much easier.

LIVe Again! is a complete, effective and easy to follow healthy
lifestyle program designed to take the guesswork and worry out
of improving the health of your bones.

Each Marodyne LIV Tablet will come with the 24 Podcasts that
you can listen to while using your tablet. The information provided
is a powerful bone health program that you can follow with

There will also be additional information on the
website to help you cre
ate the best and most complete bone
health program possible. I will be testing and collecting data on
the Marodyne in my
office. I will also be supporting a colleague of
mine who is selling the LIV Tablet by offering a free bone health
to anyone who buys the device from him.

Stay tuned for more updates. Feel free to email us with your
questions at
Kate's My Healthy Way Blog

Check out Kate Conrad's latest blog entry titled
Pushing Your Limits

Click on Kate's My Healthy Way Blog to Read More>>> 

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) 2006-2011 by Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.


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