5 Tips to Shape Up for Summer
Fitness, Happiness, Inspiration, Nutrition, Wellness

5 Tips to Shape Up for Summer

I hesitated long and hard about posting a photo of myself in a bikini at age 54, but I’ve paid my dues – in the form of sweat equity. I’ve worked hard at getting in – and staying in shape, and I’ve tried just about every diet imaginable. There will be haters who will say I’m not in the best shape, and they’re right, but I’m beyond thrilled that I can fit into a two-piece swimsuit and qualify for an AARP card at the same time!

The truth is, I’ve struggled with my weight nearly all my life – starving myself and wasting money on stupid diets and every imaginable exercise – from step, to Spinning, to slide, to kickboxing, Zumba, yoga and everything in between. All for the sole purpose of looking “ok” in a bikini. Trust me, I knew I’d never be a fitness model, or any type of model, I just didn’t want to embarrass myself if I had to jump in a pool at a party, if that ever happened.

But there’s another reason why I did it.

If you’re interested in my fitness and nutrition tips I’m happy to share. If you want to know what provoked me, read through to the end.

1. Be Selfish. Although I’ve been a group fitness instructor for more than thirty-five years, I can think of an absurd amount of excuses for why I don’t have time to exercise: There is work to do, errands to run, dust bunnies to vacuum, and Netflix shows to watch – (have you seen The OA or The Crown?!) The one thing that people with amazing physiques like Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, J-Lo, and other well-chiseled celebrities have in common is that they put in the time – they do the work – a LOT of it. If you really want to get in shape, spend an hour a day, five days a week exercising. At least. Many of us who are parents put the needs of our children first while sacrificing our own health. Of course, I’m not suggesting to throw out the baby with the bathwater, but carving out even a measly few minutes every day for YOU can make a significant change in your body, keep you healthier, happier, and teach your kids about the importance of a healthy lifestyle. If you’re an empty-nester, like me, it feels a little strange to put quality self-care at the forefront of your life, especially if you’ve spent twenty, thirty or even forty years taking care of others.

But you need to….

2. Schedule It. Make an appointment with yourself as if you had a doctor’s appointment and would be charged if you failed to show. Schedule time every single day to focus on planning healthy meals, snacks, and exercise. Four minutes a day can be the motivation you need to make significant change in your life. The secret is that four minutes can turn into 10, 20, 30 minutes or more. You have to start somewhere. Make a commitment and stick to it!

What exercises are the best?

3. Do Something, ANYTHING. It doesn’t matter what the exercise is or how well it works for others, if you don’t like to do it, chances are you won’t do it. However, you have to suck it up and do something, anything every day! Get in the gym, swim, bike or dance! Find the thing that makes your heart sing and you’ll do it more often. Make sure you combine these three elements in your weekly fitness regime: strength training, cardiovascular training and stretching. Working out at least 30 minutes a day five days a week is optimal. Obviously, a little more goes along way in this case. Take a look at HIIT Training: High-Intensity Interval Training is short bursts of intense cardiovascular training combined with small pockets of working-recovery, usually strength training, that will sculpt muscles and leave you sweaty in a short period of time. Many professional athletes and celebrities are using HIIT training. Mix it up! Dance, swim, walk, bike, lift weights, play with your kids or your dog. Anything to get moving! It’s important to strike your muscles in different ways to prevent injuries, increase flexibility and maintain cardiovascular fitness, decrease stress and increase bone density. Increase the intensity, duration and frequency with which you work out. Work out harder, longer, or faster!

What about food?

4. Trash the Junk. All the greatest workouts in the world won’t give you a lean and toned body if you’re only eating pop tarts, cheeseburgers and sodas. Fuel your body with superfood nutrition. Having struggled with my weight all my life, I think I have it figured out after 54 years of searching. I’ve gained and lost over one hundred pounds throughout the decades, but finally, I am at a weight with which I am happy. No starving or denying myself either! I have boundless energy, no cravings during that three p.m. lull, and yet I still have ice cream, cake and chips (on occasion). I owe it all to Isagenix. The system has simplified my life, while giving me incredible vitality and made losing that last ten pounds easy. Is the system a magic pill? For me, it sure does seems like it. For the first time in my life, I’m at my goal weight and have tons of energy throughout my day – especially during workouts.

For more information on the products that have changed my life, click on this link.

And finally….

5 Tips to Shape Up for Summer5. Take a Selfie. Take a photo of yourself in just your undies. Is there something you don’t like? Guess who can change that?You can! Find a photo of someone who has a figure that is similar to what you’d like to achieve. Put your selfie next to your goal photo. During the next 30 days, look at the two pictures every morning and whenever you’re hangry (hungry + angry). Imagining the future can be a very potent prescription for positive change! Isagenix has a program called the ISA Body Challenge, which gives you daily motivation and inspiration to stick to your goals and get in shape.

With nearly half of the American population dancing toward obesity, and health-care costs sky-rocketing, staying physically fit isn’t just about looking good, it’s about feeling good, too. We can’t afford to take our health for granted, as those of us who’ve had life-threatening illnesses know.

Why I did it.

Fifteen years ago I was sucking on oxygen, barely able to crawl up a flight of stairs. Looking good in a bikini was not even a consideration. Living through the day, was. Having suffered with pre-emphysema caused by toxic mold exposure, I remember thinking once that I just wanted to be healthy enough to watch my son’s track meet. There was a time when the simple process of getting dressed, leaving the house, driving a car and climbing up outdoor bleachers was unthinkable. Now, I can run up and down the bleachers, and that’s all that really matters. So, now that I think of it, the best part of the bikini photo for me is the smile on my face. If you’re not healthy, you can’t be happy, and that’s really all that matters.

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21 Comments

  • Reply Alyson L. Fogelsong March 17, 2017 at 1:53 pm

    Thank You! I’m going to do this. I believe in accountability.

  • Reply Allen Carlisle March 17, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    You were absolutely correct Miss Nugent .
    At 55 I’ve got to get my inner strength to keep myself from breaking those rules truly only exercise I get is doin at 55 I’ve got to get my inner strength to keep myself from breaking those rules truly only exercise I get is during hunting season !
    Thank you and God bless 👍🏼🤙🏼🦌

  • Reply Mary McVeigh Nowlin March 17, 2017 at 3:39 pm

    You are awesome and an inspiration ♡

  • Reply Martha Youstra March 17, 2017 at 4:16 pm

    You can be very proud. Most teens don’t look this great.

  • Reply April OLeary March 17, 2017 at 6:37 pm

    Rockin body and tips Shemane!!! Yes it’s about health on the inside and the outside. And being selfish when it means being better for everyone else I’d say is a healthy frame of mind. Xoxoxo

  • Reply Robin Stangler March 18, 2017 at 11:45 am

    Shemane, You are definitely a motivator. Thanks for the reminder~~ 4 minutes a day.

  • Reply Vicki welsh March 18, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    Shermane, you look awesome! That’s dedication and hard work. I myself being 51 have changed my life and have lost 40 lbs. just walking every day. I take a hour for myself. I do however need to add some strength training Into my workout. Seeing you in a two peace has given me that added boost. Thank you!! Stay beautiful both inside and out!😘

  • Reply Shelly March 18, 2017 at 10:25 pm

    You look great, and I was closer to my happier body 3 yrs ago. My work and income changed with more stress. I’m trying to make slow moves back to my best sizes, yet doctors have me back on medicines to handle all my life changes and allergies.

    I’m afraid to try isagenix because of my wide range of allergies. I work at gnc and have tried all sorts. Getting back to a cla and carnitine mix is starting to help and a waist trainer to start.

    You are an inspiration and I lived in China spring and yet did not have the courage to attend your Zumba class alone.

    • Reply Shemane Nugent March 19, 2017 at 9:04 am

      Stress has been linked to many diseases including cancer and obesity. Try to find the thing that makes your heart sing and you’ll be happier!
      Isagenix has changed my life and helped me with my allergies, including migraines!

      I’m sad you didn’t come to my class. : (
      Is

  • Reply Mary Julkowski March 18, 2017 at 10:26 pm

    Love the smile comment. Top to Bottom. Fabulous.

  • Reply Ronnie March 20, 2017 at 1:32 pm

    Shemane i don’t doubt for one minute what you’re saying is true. But that Isagenix is expensive! I am on a fixed income & there’s no way I could afford that stuff. Wish I could but my budget just won’t allow it. Also as active as Ted is then why doesn’t he have rock hard abs. I’m imagine he’s in good health but face it he does have a nice little gut going on. Please feel free to email me with your thoughts & have a great day!

    • Reply Shemane Nugent March 21, 2017 at 7:48 am

      Isagenix replaces 1-2 meals a day for about $3 each. This is organic, non-gmo, soy-free, gluten-free food that has changed my life. I don’t waste money on fast food or junk food that costs more. It’s super food fuel for my body. millions of people spend money on stupid diets, surgery and gimmicks to lose weight. There’s no magic pill, but this is pretty incredible!

      Ted doesn’t have rock abs because he choses to eat chips and doesn’t workout. ; \

      • Reply Ronnie Bertrang March 22, 2017 at 3:10 am

        Thank you so very much Shemane for responding to my message. It really means so much to me. I didn’t realize Isagenix had some products that were so inexpensive. Some of the supplements i was looking at on their website were just a little out of my reach. I didn’t do much investigating after that, my own stupid fault. Can you please tell me what i could take in the dollar range that you are referring to? Shoot i can afford 6 bucks a day for that. I just don’t know where to get started at & i would desperately love to drop a little weight. You know Shemane all my life i was as skinny as a bean pole & always ate double helpings of everything. Then one day it seemed like overnight when i was around 50 or so KABOOM i put on weight. How could this happen to me i thought…haha. Now at 63 yrs. old & 6’2″ @235lbs. i just can’t seem to loose any weight. Oh i’ll lose 5-6 lbs. here & there only to gain it all back. I know you’ve been there too. I’m so sick & tired of not being able to drop some weight it really gets me down sometimes. I’d like to get down to around 185 or anything below 200 i’m just at my wits end. I am bi-polar & some of the meds i take makes you put on some weight so i fight that too. I’ve got high blood pressure & high cholesterol & have to take meds for that also. I told my wife, Julie, that i get so sick & tired of taking all these medications that i would love to one day not to have to take all these pills. One time i tried weening myself off of my bi-polar medications but soon the depression became unbearable. So i had to get back on the meds again. Both Julie & i see the same psychiatrist for our bi-polar disorder. She is a wonderful psychiatrist & we just love her to death. When we see her it’s like going to visit a friend. She truly dedicates her life & expertise to each one of her patients & in her sessions she takes as much time as necessary to work on the individual. My bi-polar started in ’93 when my dad unexpectedly died @ 69 yrs. old on the operating table due to complications from heart surgery. My dad was my best friend & buddy. Julie & i just celebrated our 23rd anniversary said that’s one of the reasons she married me because i was so much like him. Julie told me once that the first time she seen me she said to herself “now that’s the man i should have married”. She was married at the time to another man who didn’t appreciate her one bit. I asked her why she said that to herself & she said she just knew. I guess it’s a gift that God gave women. Soon after he passed i was walking around our house with my 12ga. shotgun telling Julie that i wanted to go be with dad. I don’t even remember doing that, but when she told me about my crazy actions i knew i needed help. So i’ve been in therapy basically since loosing my dad in ’93 & since then have never even once thought about taking my own life. Too much to live for & i have such a craving for life i truly appreciate each & every moment, with God’s help also. I don’t know if i’ll ever be able to completely abolish my bi-polar meds but i know i can loose some weight. I just need some help in getting pointed in the right direction. I would love to one day to be able to not have to take Lisinopril for my high blood pressure & Lipitor for my cholesterol. I’m sure by dropping some pounds this just might be the trick. I’m retired now but i do stay as active as i can. I’ve told Julie before that if i knew i’d be so busy in retirement i would have never quit work haha. I’ve got two bad knees, had surgery years ago on my left knee do to a fall i took at work, landed on my left knee smack down on the concrete walking down a flight of stairs. Didn’t think much about it at first but a few days later the pain became so unbearable i could hardly walk at all. Ended up chipping my kneecap & tearing up a bunch of tendons & ligaments. The surgeon told me at the time that one day i would probably have to have a knee replacement. I thought damn i’ll have to get to the point where i can’t walk at all before i have that done. I know Ted had to have both his knees replaced due to all his antics performing when he was younger & it finally took a toll on his body. I live in Tulsa & remember when Ted would come here to perform seemed like 3-4 times a year, you know when ticket’s were $5.00 each, i’d always go see Ted perform. He always has been & still is my favorite all time guitarist. I imagine i’ve seen Ted perform at least 25 times in my life & he has never disappointed me. Always pours his heart & soul into his performances & it shows the way he masterfully executes his controlled insanity. I remember the one time he played here he was standing on top of the double or triple stack of amps just whaling away on his guitar when all of a sudden he fell off backwards from the amps. I said to my friend who was with me “shit did you just see what i seen”? He said yes he fell. Ask Ted if he remembers that. He’ll probably tell you he’s fallen so many times he’s lost count. Ted has always been a true warrior indeed. The show didn’t end there either. He somehow managed to come back out & finished the show. But damn i know that had to hurt. Anyway didn’t mean to veer off the main subject but i just need a little help with the Isagenix on where to start. I don’t do any kinds of illegal drugs whatsoever, i’ve always gotten high from playing my guitar & working on cars & airplanes. That’s how i’ve always gotten my kicks. I rarely will ever drink a beer at all. A little red wine now & then & that’s about it. Oh i forgot to mention i also have a bad back due to lifting a toolbox when i was young. So about the only exercise i get is daily walks with my dog Bella who is just an absolute sweetheart. She’s a lab-husky mix & is the sweetest dog i’ve ever owned in my lifetime. People all the time comment on how soft her fur is. It feels like a cotton ball they tell me. In fact i think she doesn’t even know she’s a dog at all…haha. So at least since being retired i haven’t become a couch potato & do nothing. I’m always trying to stay as active as my body will allow but just can’t shed the pounds. I watch what i eat even though i do admit i eat way too much junk food, i’m just sick of putting that kind of poison in my body & i want things to change. I know i’m determined enough to do it but just need some help in doing so. Shemane you truly are in inspiration to everyone who is wanting a better & healthier lifestyle & i’m ready to get on board! I hope i didn’t bore you too much, but if you have any suggestions i’m all ears. Thank you again so very much for taking the time to read this & i look forward to hearing from you with any suggestions you might have & thank you & Ted for sharing so much of your life with the rest of us to learn & appreciate.
        God Bless you & Ted & take care,
        Ronnie Bertrang

  • Reply Eric stucky April 7, 2017 at 11:51 am

    Hi Shemane, my name is Eric Stucky. I think it’s great you’re promoting healthy living and finding a way to make a business of it too. I have to admit, I got on you’re site in an effort to contact Ted but I couldn’t find a place to comment or ask questions. So, now i have questions for you as well.

    I was wondering if you encourage you’re clients to get fresh local seasonally grown produce and try or avoid GMO’s? I was curious if when recommending lean meat, it was from local sources as well? I Sincerely hope you will be able to run a successful business and truly help individuals improve their lives. I’m looking forward to you’re reply.
    Best wishes, Stucky

    Ps
    I know you are both extremely busy in you’re lives and a response may take some time. Please pass this on to Ted. If possible, I would also appreciate hearing personaly from you both as opposed any standard staff response.
    I’ve always been a fan of The Motir City Mad man from his music, his hunting and willingness to speak his mind openly. I have seen past that promotional image and know that he has a soft, caring side and he does care and does do positive things for the community. I generally agree with Ted in his political stances. For example, strongly believe in our 2nd amendment rights. I really feel that we get out what we put in. In other words, generally speaking the harder we work the bigger the pay back. I have been a life long longbow entheusiest and would love to swap stories about my family owned 100 acre wood which I hunt regularly in Hastings MI.

    Here are my serious questions for Ted. Most importantly, are you willing to admit that you were wrong about president Trump? Ted you have made a lot of bold accusations about other politicians. I’m not saying that they were wrong but I am saying that the very things which you have criticized about others are exactly the kind of things that this administration is exhibiting. Trump “lies daily”. Maybe it’s not a conscious thing? Maybe he has some disability or undiagnosed deficiency which causes his erratic behavior? In which case, I would make an argument toward supporting funding within the mental health field as opposed to cutting it.

    They’re trying to make a big deal about him not accepting a salary. If he donated his salary, every day for an entire month, that would just about cover the cost of one of his excursions to Flordia. It seems to me, if a person really cared about balancing a budget and helping the country he wouldn’t be highlighting the left hand while the right steals the working mans wallet. What do you make of this display?

    Doesn’t it bother you that Trump has not released his taxes?
    Do you think the reasons could be connected to his dealings with foreign powers?
    Doesn’t it concern you that he has gotten rid of everyone with experience and replaced them with people who have very little if any of the qualities to meet the respective positions in which they have been appointed? Don’t miss what I’m asking here. I’m not saying that it’s odd or wrong to put you’re own people in jobs. My experience has taught me, those who surround themselves with exellents will likely succeed. All personalities aside, why would anyone who wants to do well sorround themselves with unqualified individual So? Ill try to relate it to you this way, and I’m willing to wager that, personalities aside, every band you ever put together had nothing less than excellent musical talent. You wouldn’t dream of getting rid of getting rid of one of the best drummers around and replacing him with some guy who couldn’t even keep steady rhythm. Even if you and that drummer didn’t really see eye to eye, you could respect him for his musical talents.

    Have we ever had a 4 or 8 year president with this many scandals and odd dealings? Ted, he hasn’t even made it six months yet! They didn’t have anyone who even knew how to turn on the White House lights for two weeks! Virtually everyone that he has hand picked, is under investigation, Already been fired or have no qualifications to preform the duties of the job they have been appointed to do!

    Ok , enough said for now. I’m pretty sure you can see I’m not a Trump supporter. I would be very interested on you’re arguments or insights that might explain you’re continued support for him. I would have so much more admiration and respect for you as a man if you would publicly admit you were wrong about this man. Many many people form their own political and social views based on what you say.
    Please note, I’m not asking you to change your overall views. I don’t know, that when it comes to politics, if any of us ever change much. But I think I’m writing more about things like: honesty, integrity and humility. I admire you because I believe you to possess these qualities. Please give me a personal response. Better yet, get in touch with me and we can discuss over a good stumping session together!
    Best wishes to you and you’re family Ted. I really do mean that.
    Stucky
    Phone: 808 457-6626
    eastucky101@gmail.com

  • Reply Freddie Jackson April 16, 2017 at 5:26 pm

    Very Great Woman I’m glad I have got to see you and meet you even though it’s just through Facebook. Thank you and you really Rock.

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