Here we go again with another month—no, make that another year—that’s flown by and all I can do is shake my head and wonder where they go. I mean it seems like last Christmas was only a couple of months ago. It’s downright crazy how fast time goes these days. Can I hear an amen?

Ready or not, here we are with the holidays upon us once again. And as this month’s newsletter deadline approaches, I can’t help but feel led to talk about what the upcoming holiday symbolizes: GRATITUDE.

I wear a yellow bracelet (as seen in pic below) that says “Do all things without complaining” quite often to remind myself not to whine and complain about things, because it’s just so annoying to do that. Nobody wants to hear it, it spreads negativity all over anyone within earshot, and it keeps you stuck in a bad place.

Seriously. Keep beating that drum and nothing will change for the good. It’s true. What you focus on expands. As long as you whine and complain, nothing is going to improve. Even worse, you bring others down with you, spreading toxic negativity. Not good.

Pivot Your Way to an Attitude of Gratitude
Next time you truly feel like whining, try pivoting to a place of gratitude in your head instead. Just stop yourself as soon as you realize what you’re doing and think of something you’re thankful for. Count your blessings. If you’re like me you have so many more than you can count.

It is completely impossible to be in a place of gratitude and be negative at the same time. Your emotions can’t do it. Your brain can’t think that way. It’s one or the other. It's impossible for two things to occupy the same space at the same time. So now's the perfect time to pivot.

Look at it this way: When you’re complaining, you’re focusing on the negative, and this just attracts more negative stuff into your life.

However, when you pivot your thoughts and switch your focus to your blessings—something positive—you are opening the door for positive and wonderful things—more blessings—to flow into your life. Now, who doesn’t want that, I ask you?

So, next time someone asks you how you’re doing, don’t reply with a laundry list of all your woes and leave them thinking in their heads, "Okay, TMI!" I promise you, that is not what they want to hear. Too much info, baby! Even if you feel like crap and you’re having a bad day, just pivot and count your blessings and watch how quickly your day begins to improve.

Focus on the good things in your life and more good will come. It’s the way the Universe works!

In the words of one of my favorite authors, Dr. Wayne Dyer, "When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change."

Good luck, happy pivoting, and happy Thanksgiving!

Okay, kids. How’re we doing with those six meals a day? Anybody? Hello, is this mic on? That’s what I was afraid of.

I know, I can be challenging to eat so many times a day and it takes planning, but I promise it works. Look at it this way: Every time you feed yourself one of your little healthy mini-meals, it’s like stoking your metabolism furnace. In this case more really is less.

Keep that metabolism burning those calories, baby! That’s the name of the game. Here are a few tips to help you out in no particular order:

  • Plan ahead. You should know what you are going to eat per 24-hour period at least. Consider it planning for success.
  • Take some time on Sunday to prepare food in big enough quantity for the week and pre-package it in single servings for convenience.
  • Grill or bake enough chicken breasts for the week and freeze them in single packs.
  • Buy single serving microwavable veggie packs.
  • Eat 3 meals and 3 snacks a day, dividing your total caloric intake accordingly.
  • Make sure to watch your servings/portion control.
  • Eat about every 2-3 hours.
  • Avoid overeating.
  • Don't allow yourself to get too hungry by going to long between meals or snacks.
  • Try to include some healthy protein AND carbs in your meals and snacks.
  • Save your lightest snack for the evening snack.
  • Buy low-fat yogurt and mozzarella string cheese for snacks.
  • Buy your nuts of choice and then measure them out in snack baggies per serving so you won’t be tempted to eat too many. In fact, do this with any snack that you can, i.e., trail mix, dried fruit, etc.
  • Drink lots of water.
  • Chew sugar-free gum.
  • Try to follow the food pyramid guide.

    If you have some tips I haven't mentioned here, please feel free to submit your ideas on my contact me page. I'll give them an honorable mention in my next newsletter. Or if you have a newsletter topic suggestion, you can submit it there too. I'd love to hear from you!

    I am working diligently to get my book, "SO YOU JOINED A GYM...NOW WHAT?" released before Christmas, so keep it in mind for a gift for loved ones. Just finishing up on some behind the scenes work. I will let you know when it is ready. Very soon! I will be releasing it as a PDF eBook download first and a Kindle eBook at and also as hard copy purchasable from I'll keep a few hard copies nearby for locals too.

    My next book will be on nutrition. Yay. Can’t wait!

    This is the part of the newsletter where I picture an exercise and give explicit instructions on its proper execution. This month’s exercise is one that will help your posture whilst building a pretty back. It's called the Machine or Cable Row. It is an excellent compound exercise that I see abused daily due to improper form and technique. Let's see what we can do to fix that.

    Primary Muscle Group Worked:
    Upper/mid Back.
    Muscles Worked: Lats, biceps, middle back, lower back.
    The form is the same on most machine rows as on cable rows.

    Starting Position: Grasp handles and sit in good body alignment (abs tight, chest up, back straight). Place feet firmly on foot plates with knees slightly bent and locked. Keep upper torso upright and stationary throughout the execution of this exercise.

    Execution: Pinch your shoulder blades and poke your chest out while pulling handles into your ribcage. Bring elbows back as far as possible while keeping forearms in line with resistance cable/belt. Contract lat muscles fully without compromising form. Return to start position. Do not allow muscles to relax before next repetition. Repeat for desired amount of reps.

    TIPS: When using a narrow grip, as shown, keep elbows in tight and as close to the body as possible as you pull handle to ribcage. When using wide grip, flare elbows. Be sure to keep torso upright throughout as if leaning against the back of an upright bench.

    Okay, peeps! I've been inspired with an idea for a new section of the newsletter. It will be the inspirational part that will be heretofore known as the "Ponder Pond" where you'll be welcome to take a swim in the sweet waters of inspiration that can only come from things that make you go, "Wow!"

    This week's inspiration is a video link that was sent to me earlier this week. I watched it 3 times in the same day and cried every time. Do yourself a favor and sit back and enjoy this incredible journey with Dr. Jill Taylor. It lasts about 20 minutes and is well worth your time. I can't say enough about it. Just watch it! It is truly life changing!

    Well, that's about it for this month! Until the next issue, may the wind be at your back and improved health and vitality your new reality!

    If you enjoyed this newsletter, please feel free to pay it forward to anyone you think would like it too. That is the best compliment you could ever pay me, and I appreciate it very, very much.

    And don't forget to tell everybody about. where they can get all the free fitness info their heart desires and sign up for this newsletter while they are there.

    From my heart to your health,

    Linda Burke, CPT

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