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As far as feedback on the Posture Perfect!TM class goes, it has not only met my expectations, but exceeded them! There are several reasons I enjoy the class... 

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The Sequoia Advisor

       IN THIS ISSUE                                                               November 1st 2013

  • Calories are NOT King
  • BOSU: Better Bone Strength, Balance and Heart Health
  • Upcoming Events... Workshop Series... There's No Place Like Home 
  • Osteoporosis Support News... Yoga Nidra and Safe Senior Yoga
  • Posture Perfect!TM  Take Your First Class for FREE!

Feel Better... Live Better

Calories are NOT King
By Woody McMahon

Counting Calories
If you want to lose some weight, at first, counting calories seems like
a good idea. However, over time counting calories becomes very labor
intensive and actually increases your stress leading to preoccupation
with food and weight gain. The first step to successfully losing weight
is to reduce stress and food's importance in your life.

The last thing that you want from a weight loss program is for it to increase
your stress and make you obsess more over the foods that you eat.
The mere process of calculating and totaling calories for all the foods you
eat makes you more rather than less food focused. So if counting calories
is not the answer, then what is the best way to keep from overeating?

Control Portions
For most people, excess weight results from stress eating and a lack of
physical activity. Reaching a healthy weight and keeping it there first
requires an understanding of proper portion size. If you eat out or on the
run, you probably have noticed that food portions have become much larger.
Some portions are even called "super size," letting you know in advance
that a lot of food is headed your way. Once you can get portions under
control, 70% of your weight loss challenge is over. Here are some pointers
to help you eat smarter.

Food is Visual
Before taste and smell come into play, your food is first visual.
Visualizing how much food you really need keeps your portions in the
healthy size range. First look at your meal; does it look like a lot of
food? If it does then it probably is a lot of food. Take your meal and
look at it again. Is it bright and colorful? If it is then you have a good
food variety with lots of fruits and vegetables included. What is the
ratio between your meat, vegetable, fruit and starch groups? If your
vegetable group is the largest, followed by meat, fruit and starch then
you are doing well.

The Half Meal Rule
Generally if you plan on eating a correct portion a
t a restaurant, you'll
take their serving size and cut it in half. Your mother was wrong; you
don't have to finish everything on your plate. That advice was based on a
young, active growing body and does not apply to you now. Consider this;
in this time of spiraling food costs, if you take half the meal home you'll
save money by purchasing two meals for the price of one. Sometimes
certain foods are even better the next day. If you are not a leftover
person, just leave it behind.

Save Yourself a Lot of Work
Remember, every extra 250 calories consumed means another hour of
exercise. If you're not careful, it is easy to overeat 500 to 1000 extra
calories in a day. Do the math and you'll see that it takes 2 to 4 hours of
exercise time just to maintain your current body weight. If you are trying to
lose weight, the 2 to 4 hours of exercise does not shed one extra pound
from your body. So be smart and eat a normal, healthy portion to control
your weight and then exercise 3 hours a week to improve your health.

Learn Your Correct Meal Size
Once you can look at your plate and know what the correct amount of food
looks like, counting calories can be a thing of the past. As you make the
switch from counting to visualizing, it may be helpful to get a food scale
and a measuring cup. You can weigh a correct portion of chicken, beef or
fish and remember what that looks like on your plate. Use the measuring
cup for serving sizes of vegetables, rice, pasta and fruits. Once you see
what a meal with correct portion sizes is supposed to look like, at home
or eating out, you'll never overeat again. If you have questions or need
more help, feel free to email or call me for more personalized advice.

Would you like to reduce stress and get to a healthy weight but
don't know where to start?
I provide an easy to follow program called
Healthy Weight!TM that helps reduce excess weight, improve your bone
health, posture, balance and strength while improving your health.
Contact me for a 20 minute no cost consultation at 703-628-2880 or
email to

BOSU: Better Bone Strength, Balance and Heart Health
by Woody McMahon

The BOSU Trainer
The BOSU is a unique piece of functional training equipment that can help
improve your strength, balance and cardiovascular fitness. If you are not
using the BOSU in your workouts, you are missing out on a great piece of
training equipment. The BOSU is a half round ball that is flexible and
feels much like a trampoline when you stand on it. Originally the name
"BOSU" was an acronym for "Both Sides Up." It meant that the BOSU
Balance Trainer could be used on either side; the dome or the platform.

A Note of Caution
Even though the BOSU is an excellent training tool, it may not be
appropriate for everyone. It is best to start slowly and safely with the
BOSU to prevent injuries or falls.
Please contact me i
f you have questions
about its value for you.

Benefits to Balance
The BOSU is considered an advanced balance trainer especially if you are
standing on it. The soft, movable surface places a greater demand on your
balance muscles, core stabilizers, foot proprioceptors and inner ear. This
increased demand on the equilibrium mechanisms challenges them to improve
your balance faster. Beginners can start using the BOSU by stepping into
it with one foot at a time. Each step increases your comfort level with
how the BOSU moves under your feet.

Improvements in Bone Strength
The BOSU is really just a flexible step that requires greater use of your
stability muscles to maintain balance. It adds an unstable dimension to
any lower or upper body exercise creating a greater muscular and boney
challenge. Of course, an increased challenge means faster strength gains
in less time. The soft, deformable surface strengthens your whole leg
(foot, ankle, knee, hip and core) as it works together to try
and stabilize the rest of your body.

For a Healthier Heart
The BOSU offers the perfect solution for those looking to get a more
functional and dynamic cardiovascular workout, especially if you have
knee, hip or back pain. Standing on the soft surface of the BOSU, you can
step quickly or jump up and down for several minutes really getting your
heart pumping. For more advanced users, you can start on the floor and
jump onto the BOSU. Finally, standing on the ball performing 90 or
180 degree jump turns offers a balance, strength and heart challenge like
none other. The BOSU beats the treadmill hands down for a healthier heart.

Some Great BOSU Exercise Ideas
The many ways you can use the BOSU is only limited by your imagination
and creativity. Here are 3 good exercises to challenge your balance,
strength and cardiovascular conditioning.

1. BOSU Balance
The first time you try this place the BOSU near a wall in case you need
to hold on for stability. Place the BOSU on the floor flat side down.
Start by stepping onto the BOSU and placing your feet slightly less than
shoulder width apart. Stand on two feet until you feel comfortable with
the feeling of the soft, moveable surface. Then try walking around the top
of the ball in a circle to increase your balance challenge. Next place one
foot on the top center of the BOSU and try balancing on one leg. Switch
legs after about a minute.

2. BOSU Jumps/Jump Turns
Place the BOSU on the floor flat side down. Start by stepping onto the
BOSU placing your feet slightly less than shoulder width apart. Bounce up
and down until you feel comfortable on the soft surface. Once you feel
stable try jumping high enough so that your feet actually leave the ball.
Make sure to keep your knees bent. When you have mastered that
progression, try 90 degree jump turns. Make sure to jump in both
directions for equal balance and muscle development.

3. BOSU Lunges
Place the BOSU on the floor, flat side down, against a wall or other
immovable surface. Standing back about 3 feet and facing the BOSU, lunge
into the side of the soft top surface. Try to keep your balance making
sure that both knees are slightly bent and your back heel is slightly off
the ground. Also keep your head and chest upright and maintain your
balance. Return to your original starting position and step with the other
foot. You can make it a little more challenging by placing the hands on your

Give these exercises a try and see how the BOSU can really add a whole
new dimension to your workout.
If you have questions or need
more help, feel free to email or call me for more personalized advice.

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

Upcoming Events and News

Workshop Series... There's No Place Like Home
We believe that your home is your castle and, for many beneficial
reasons, you want to stay there as long as you can.
Deciding to
stay may be one of the biggest life decisions you will ever make

Fortunately, we are here to help you plan and make good decisions
allowing you to stay in your own home for as long as you want

Just like we tell all of our clients, "You Can Stay, We Can Help!

Recent research has shed some interesting light on the darker side of
retirement home living. Everything from higher costs to the loss of
personal freedom and independence has been examined in these
recent reports. These reports have determined that living in a
retirement setting is not as easy or glamorous as you might think.

On January 21st, 2014 Pat Williams of GraceFul Care and I will
begin a quarterly workshop series entitled
There's No Place Like Home. We will discuss the many health and
quality of life benefits of staying in the comfort of your own home
rather than moving to a retirement facility. We will outline the logical
and important steps necessary to keep you in your home.

Click Here to read more about out wonderful, new program.

Beginner Posture Perfect!TM Classes in Herndon, Reston
and Arlington

We have beginner Posture Perfect!TM classes in Herndon, Reston and
Arlington. Take your first class for FREE and see how much taller, more
balanced and relaxed you feel afterwards. To register please contact
Woody McMahon at 703-628-2880 or email to

Please wear comfortable clothes and bring a towel, a bottle of water
and an exercise mat if you have one.

Rock Spring Congregational Church currently offers a Yoga and Tai Chi
class at their church. Posture Perfect!TM will be a nice addition to those
two offerings.

Posture Perfect!TM for Spinomed Program
I have created a new companion back strengthening exercise program to
help anyone wearing the Spinomed orthosis. The classes include helpful tips
on getting the most from your Spinomed as well as exercises that help
strengthen your back, improve your posture and increase your balance.

Click Here to learn more about this exciting program.

Posture Perfect!TM First Class FREE

Instead of holding a monthly Posture Perfect!TM demo class, several
people have asked if thy can just come to one of the classes. For a 
limited time, you can try your first Posture Perfect!TM class for FREE.

so please call Woody McMahon at 703.628.2880 or email to for more information or to make
your reservation.

The FREE Posture Perfect!TM class helps introduce you to the many
benefits of our safe and effective posture, balance and strength program
co-developed by Sara Meeks, PT and Woody McMahon, personal trainer.

Come and experience how each class can help strengthen your bones,
improve your balance, alleviate back aches and neck pains, improve
osteoporosis and teach you how to sit and stand-up straighter. 

The History of Posture Perfect!TM
When I developed the Posture Perfect!TM classes over 2 years ago, there
were no safe and effective exercise programs available for
"over age 50" adults.
Everywhere I looked there
were older adults in classes that used seated
exercises (bad for your back); machine style exercises (bad for your balance)
treadmills (a poor leg strengthener); and performed movements that
involved crunching, bending and twisting. (increases the risk of spinal

Posture Perfect!TM solved all of these problems by offering a safe and effective
approach helping older adults become more active. Each class
improves your
strengthens your bones,
enhances your balance, alleviates back
and neck pains, reduces fracture risk and teaches you how to sit
and stand-up straighter. 


We have several people in our current classes who are coming to strengthen
their bones
and over half of the others are interested in exercises and posture
changes to help make their backs and necks feel better.

Please call Woody McMahon at 703-628-2880 or email to for more information, class times and reservations.

Posture Perfect!TM Testimonials...
Posture Perfect's! momentum continues to grow. Here is a glowing testimonial
from one of our class members.

"Posture Perfect!TM class has not only met my expectations, but exceeded
them! There are several reasons I enjoy the class. The small class size
gives each of us extraordinary personalized training; your knowledge,
expertise, patience, and sense of humor makes me look forward to
coming to a class I thought would be only for 6 weeks; and I have
learned so much more than I expected."

"For example, I now think about my posture every time I sit, and just when
I thought I'd begin to have a hard time rising from sitting on the floor, you
taught me how to make it easier. I try to practice some of the balance
exercises a couple of times a week (I know, I should do it more often!).
I thank you for all I have learned from you so far, and hope to continue
this class for the foreseeable future!"
Paula S.

Click Here to read more about S.A.F.E. and effective Posture Perfect!TM

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) 2006-2013 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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