Fitness Friday Coach K…Healthy Feet

When we think of physical fitness, we don’t always think of our feet. If you’re like me, you probably just slip on a pair of socks and shoes and go about your day. Then it hits you – tired, achy foot pain! When the only relief is sneaking in a chair break or popping your shoes off late afternoon, it may be time to consider foot health.

Foot health is responsible for how we walk, run, balance, squat, stand and land. Any deviation of those skills can attribute to knee and hip misalignments, back and neck pain, and ultimately postural problems.

Today, we’re going to share some exercises that will get you back on your feet!

Ankle Rotation

This exercise is an excellent warm-up as it helps prepare the ankle joint for the foot exercises to come. This can be performed seated or lying. Whichever position you choose, aim to have the lower leg parallel to the floor. Begin by making large circles with the toes relaxed.

15 large rotations in both directions

2-3 sets each foot


Toe Point

Toe pointing can help with toe flexibility and strengthening within the forefoot. Start by relaxing the foot while seated. Bring the foot out in front of you by extending the lower leg. Bring the toes together to a tight tip. While keeping the toes tight and together, extend your toes as far away from the body as possible. To increase intensity, add a therapy band!

Repeat 8-12 times each foot

2-3 sets each foot


Pencil Pick Up

Find a pencil to place on the floor in front of you. Using your barefoot, attempt to pick up the pencil with the toes. If picking up the pencil isn’t an option, you may substitute a hand towel. This exercise helps with toe dexterity while increasing flexibility too! Increased dexterity = increased balance!

No need to count repetitions as the act alone will help tremendously.

Toe Abduction

With a relaxed foot, raise the lower leg from the floor. First, spread the small toe and the big toe from the group. Allow the others to follow while envisioning a great distance between all of the toes. Hold this exercise for approximately 3 seconds. Relax.

Perform 8-12 repetitions

2 sets each foot


Ball Roll

A very relaxing way to finish your foot exercise routine is with ball rolls. Use a medium-sized ball and roll it back and forth between the front of the foot and the heal. A spikey reflexology ball works best, although you may use a golf, lacrosse, or tennis ball. While seated, roll the bottom of your foot over the ball for 30-60 seconds each foot.


Remember, your feet are your foundation! Enjoy!


~ Did you know? 

Biological Age is Modifiable!  Want to learn more?  Contact Boomers N Motion to Empower and Reset YOUR body’s physiology TODAY!



Wellness Wednesday…Potato Chip Swap


We’ve been talking this summer about using food as medicine, and we’ve learned how powerful food is….both for the good and for the bad. I’ve had so many people tell me that they hear what I’m saying, but they just can’t give up ___________________(fill in the blank).

What’s your “blank?” For many people, it’s POTATO CHIPS! There’s something about the crunch and the salt that people just can’t get enough of. Today, instead of focusing on one food, I’m going to share 2 recipes that fit our theme of food=medicine. And, guess what? They’re the perfect snack to swap for potato chips. Give it a try!


Kale Chips

Kale tops the list of healthy greens as an excellent source of beta-carotene and vitamin C, two antioxidants believed to be major players in the body’s battle against cancer, heart disease, and certain age-related declines in vision and cognitive function. Kale is packed with readily absorbed calcium, a mineral that is vital to warding off the bone-thinning disease, osteoporosis, and may also help keep blood pressure in healthy range. Kale also provides decent amounts of folate, iron, and potassium.


  • 1 bunch kale, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika (optional)



  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Chop kale into ½ inch pieces.
  • Place all the ingredients in a large bowl and massage the oil, lemon juice, and seal salt into the kale using your hands. (If you want an extra kick, add paprika too!)
  • Place on parchment-lined baking sheets and bake for 12 minutes.


Baked Apple Rings

As we learned a few weeks ago, apples really are awesome! They are rich in vitamin C, which is essential to a strong immune system. Eating an apple a day can help your body fight off colds, flu, and other illnesses. Apples also contain vitamins A, E, and K and the minerals potassium and calcium.


  • 6 large apples
  • 1 teaspoon of each: cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg



  • Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
  • Core apples then slice thinly with a knife or mandolin.
  • Toss apples with spices and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  • Bake for 1 hour.
  • Sprinkle with additional cinnamon and serve!


Enjoy your healthy summer snacking!!!


Stay happy, healthy, and N motion, AND REMEMBER…age is just a number!





Melissa Merkle and Kirt Lietzow own Boomers N Motion, an exercise and health coaching business focused on keeping baby boomers and older adults healthy into their golden years.  For more information on group classes and private, in-home coaching, please contact Melissa and Kirt at

Fitness Friday With Coach K…Breathe

Breathing during resistance / weight-bearing exercise can be quite the challenge. From beginners to experienced, it’s all too common to get caught up in varying breathing techniques.

“Do I breathe in during my biceps curl or breathe out?”

“Should I hold my breath when lifting heavy?”

“Do I breathe through my mouth or nose?”

The way you inhale and exhale during resistance exercise is fundamental. In developing a rhythmic pattern, you can improve your overall training while reducing intravascular pressure (blood pressure), thus relieving the strain placed on the most important muscle in the entire body – the heart. This practice ultimately leads to a more efficient and effective cardiorespiratory system!



When performing the lifting phase (i.e., concentric phase) of a resistance exercise, breathe in through your nose. As you come to completion of the contraction, pause your inhalation just for a moment. The inhalation should be calm and deliberate all the while keeping your mouth closed.



Breathe into the lowest portion of your lungs while allowing the abdomen to slightly expand. Try to prevent the shoulders from rising. This is known as diaphragmatic breathing! This type of breathing is very effective in the prevention of hypertension during exercise.



As you begin to return the weight to starting position (i.e., eccentric phase), allow the inhaled breath to slowly exhale through your open mouth.


Controlled and deliberate exhalation will help in establishing a rhythmic technique, thus becoming integrated within the exercise movement itself.



There are many differing ways to breathe during resistance exercise. Fortunately, for us air-breathers, none of these techniques require an exerciser to hold his or her breath for an extended period of time.












~ Did you know? 

Biological Age is Modifiable!  Want to learn more?  Contact Boomers N Motion to Empower and Reset YOUR body’s physiology TODAY!

Wellness Wednesday…Avocados


We made it to the middle of the week! I hope you’re making lots of healthy choices. If you’re looking for a way to boost your nutrition in the second half of the week, you’ve come to the right spot.

Today we continue our summer series, Food = Medicine, and we’re learning about AVOCADOS. They’re truly an amazing food with a plethora of health of benefits. They’re a fruit that contains protein, healthy fats, and fiber. Believe it or not, they have more potassium than a banana!

9-4-hass-and-florida-avocadosHave you noticed there are two kinds of avocados found in local supermarkets: the California avocado (typically the Hass variety) and the Florida avocado? The Hass avocado has a bumpy texture and turns from green to purple-black when it’s ripe. The Florida avocados are a bit larger and have a smooth skin. Here’s your interesting fact of the day – California avocados have more calories than a Florida avocado because it has more fat. Other than that, both varieties contain a similar nutrient profile.

075If you haven’t been too creative with using avocados in your meals, now’s the chance to put on your thinking cap. Avocados are fantastic on salads and sandwiches, and you’ve probably already thought about guacamole. Did you know that a lot of countries around the world also use them for desserts? Because of their mild flavor and creamy consistency, they are great in things like puddings and mousse. They also work great in smoothies! Get creative and see how you can sneak them into the dishes you love to eat everyday.


Avocado Nutrition Facts

Check out all the nutrients you get from eating an avocado! Studies suggest that the average consumption is about one-half an avocado, so these numbers reflect that – about ½ a medium-sized avocado.

  • 113 calorieshalf-avocado
  • 6 g dietary fiber
  • 10 grams fat
  • 6 grams carbohydrates
  • only 0.2 gram total sugar
  • 14 milligrams vitamin K (19 percent DV)
  • 60 milligrams folate (15 percent DV)
  • 6 milligrams vitamin C (12 percent DV)
  • 343 milligrams potassium (10 percent DV)
  • 2 milligrams pantothenic acid (10 percent DV)
  • 4 milligram vitamin B6 (9 percent DV)
  • 3 milligrams vitamin E (7 percent DV)
  • 5 milligrams magnesium (6 percent DV)


Looking even deeper, and you’ll see even more components that make avocados an amazing, super-charged food.

  • Monounsaturated fats
  • Fat-soluble vitamins, A, E, and K
  • Water-soluble vitamins B and C
  • Important trace minerals (like magnesium, potassium, iron, and copper)
  • Lots of Fiber
  • Protein
  • Phytonutrients (polyphenols and flavonoids)
  • Antioxidant phytochemicals (such as lutein and glutathione)
  • Folate
  • Carotenoids


Health Benefits of Avocados


Improved Heart Health1426030818943

Avocados (and especially avocado oil) promote heart health by balancing blood lipids because of their fatty acid composition. They contain about 71% monounsaturated fatty acids, or MUFAs.


Cancer Prevention

multicolored_2-01Eating avocados has been linked to the reduced risks for both cancer and diabetes. The is due to the phytochemicals found in the fruit, in addition to their healthy fat content from MUFAs.



Help with Weight Loss

Looking to lose weight fast? Avocados are your friend. The healthy fats in the fruit help you feel full faster, so you eat less overall.


Lower Risk for Metabolic Syndrome



Eating avocados helps regulate hormones associated with risk factors for diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular diseases; including, insulin, triglycerides, and cholesterol.


Healthy Skin, Eyes, and Hairimages-10

Because they are rich in fat-soluble vitamins and monounsaturated fats, avocados give you glowing skin, bright eyes, and shiny hair. This can happen when you eat them or use them topically. (I just made an avocado facemask last week. Boy, am I glad we didn’t take any pictures of my green face!)


Better Digestive Health

Avocados are one of the best fruit sources of fiber. Plus, the healthy fats are essential for digestion and nutrient absorption because they nourish the lining of the gut.

Better Hormonal Balance and Cognitive Function

602d1305678a8d5fdb372271e980da6aBecause fatty acids play an important role in regulating the central nervous system, eating avocados can boost your mood. In fact, higher-fat diets might even lower depression.



Protection from Insulin Resistance and Diabetes

A diet rich in monounsaturated fats helps balance glucose and insulin levels and helps prevent obesity.

Stay happy, healthy, and N motion, AND REMEMBER…age is just a number!




Melissa Merkle and Kirt Lietzow own Boomers N Motion, an exercise and health coaching business focused on keeping baby boomers and older adults healthy into their golden years.  For more information on group classes and private, in-home coaching, please contact Melissa and Kirt at


Fitness Friday With Coach K…Chair Squat

Performing a squat can help keep your lower body strength and flexibility at it healthiest. The chair squat is great exercise to start. All you need to perform the chair squat is a good solid chair. Melissa and I love incorporating equipment free, body weight exercises into our clients programs as they are fun, easy and highly effective! The chair squat is the perfect powerhouse that can help keep your legs and hips in tip top shape! So grab a chair, secure it against the wall and lets get squatting!

Step 1 :

Place the back of a chair firmly against the wall. Stand in front of the chair with the heals of your feet at hip width. Point your toes out, but not so much that it feels unnatural. Align your knees directly atop you ankles. Brace your core (abdominals, obliques, spinal erectors) with a contraction hold while keeping a neutral spine. Hold you arms (hands together) in front at chest level. Fix your gaze in front, 6-8 feet, while keeping the shoulder blades back and head neutral.


Step 2 :

Slowly lower your buttocks toward the chair without completely unloading all of your weight into the chair. Check those core muscles and be certain they’re still tight.


Step 3 :

Using the muscles in your legs and hips, stand back up and to the beginning of the exercise. Keep those knees and ankle joints aligned! Make certain to keep the weight in the heals! And finally, exhale. You did it!



Your just starting out with chair squats? That’s okay, you can perform 1 set of 8-12 repetitions every other day until you progress.

For intermediate to advanced, you may find more challenge in 2-4 sets with 12-15 reps every other day.




~ Did you know?

Biological Age is Modifiable! Want to learn more? Contact Boomers N Motion to Empower and Reset YOUR body’s physiology TODAY!


Wellness Wednesday…7 Ways to Add More Veggies


Happy Wednesday! Next week we’ll continue with our series Food = Medicine, and we’ll look at another supercharged food you can add to your diet. Today we’re going a little broader and talking about vegetables.

All veggies are packed with nutrients, and we could dissect each one to see how they act as medicine. Instead of focusing on just one, though, let’s look at 7 ways you can add more veggies, of all kinds, to your life. They will all do your body good!


Prepare for the Week

  • Prepare a whole week’s worth of vegetables over the weekend.

    • Wash, trim, or chop veggies, so they’re ready to go.
    • Roast or steam fresh veggies to use in your lunches.
    • Make sure you have frozen veggies that you can toss in the microwave.
  • Healthy Ways to PrepareBroccoli.png

    • Bake – sweet potatoes, winter squash
    • Steam – broccoli, green beans, asparagus, Brussels sprouts
    • Stir-Fry – zucchini, yellow squash, onions, peppers, mushrooms
    • Roast – Brussels sprouts, red peppers, beets
    • Grill – eggplant, zucchini, mushrooms, peppers, onions…think kabobs
    • Microwave – frozen veggies on busy nights


Keep Veggies In-sightFridge.png

  • Keep prepared vegetables on the top shelf of the fridge.

    • Keep veggies out of the crisper drawer where you forget about them.
    • Make them the easiest thing to grab and go.



Join a CSA or Co-Op


  • Join a CSA (community-supported agriculture) or food co-op to have a box of vegetables delivered every week.

    • If veggies show up at your door, you’re more likely to eat them.
    • Get to try new veggies each week depending on what shows up.
    • Forces you to get creative.


Eat Veggies for Breakfast

  • Add veggies to your breakfast.Breakfast

    • Try adding veggies (like green peppers, onions, mushrooms, spinach) to eggs or tofu to make an omelet.
    • Make a savory oatmeal dish with mushrooms, onion, and thyme.
    • Try an egg sandwich with whole grain toast, avocado, an egg, and kale.



Drink Your Veggies

  • Try juicing or smoothies.

    • Try juicing carrots and cucumber for a super-nutrient drink.
      • 8 carrots with ½ cucumber gives you ONE drink
    • Add leafy greens to your smoothies.
      • Spinach and kale work great, and you won’t even notice they’re there.



Snack on Raw Veggies

  • Substitute raw veggies for crackers, pita, tortillas, and other breads.Snacks.png

    • Try dipping cut-up bell pepper and cucumber in humus.
    • Eat carrots and celery like chips and dip them in salsa. You get the crunch and the spice.
    • Use leafy greens as wraps for tacos and sandwiches instead of tortillas and bread.


Don’t Forget Frozen

  • Keep frozen veggies on hand.Frozen

    • If you don’t have time to get to the store or prepare fresh, you’ll have a back-up plan.
    • Frozen veggies are always good for soups, stir-frys, and pasta dishes.
      • Try adding a bag of veggies to brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, or quinoa.


Stay happy, healthy, and N motion, AND REMEMBER…age is just a number!




Melissa Merkle and Kirt Lietzow own Boomers N Motion, an exercise and health coaching business focused on keeping baby boomers and older adults healthy into their golden years.  For more information on group classes and private, in-home coaching, please contact Melissa and Kirt at

Fitness Friday with Coach K…Quick Tip


It’s easy to get caught up in the rigmarole of the day to day. Life happens! Yet when life happens, health and wellness, well, doesn’t happen. Consider this quick and easy movement to hold you over until you can make it to your next exercise class or gym.


Todays quick tip is about rectus abdominis isometric contractions! Don’t fret. It’s not as difficult as it sounds. In fact, all we’re doing is flexing tight the walls of the abdominal group. This is the group of muscles that are often referred to as the six-pack or abs group.

Abdominal Rectus Muscle Rectus Abdominis In Yoga Anatomy Of Muscles


Remember that last time you blew out a candle? Chances are you recruited your rectus abdominis muscles. These muscles are responsible for thoracolumbar flexion (shortening of the distance between the ribcage and the hip). Begin by blowing through tightly pursed lips while pressing you fingertips into your naval area. If done correctly, you will feel your abdominals tighten and flex! Once you have that “under your belt”, hold the flexed muscles in contraction while continuing to breath normally. Nice work! You are now performing a rectus abdominis isometric contraction!



This is the exciting part! Are you standing or seated? No problem. You can give it a go right now! That’s right, you can perform this movement anytime, anywhere. Just be aware that the torso should be in alignment with the hips.


Because we utilize our abdominal group so frequently throughout the day, you can perform these holds at your leisure. Try to set a time goal for your self. For example, start by holding your abdominals tight for 10 seconds and build from there. I prefer to do it when waiting for a stop-light to change! That can be 2-3 minutes of isometrics!

Four people and a skeleton in grocery store lineup


Multiple clinical studies conclude those whom have a taunt and controlled midsection are less likely to have reoccurring lower back pain. Moreover, it can also benefit the internal organs that reside in the lower abdominal area. Lastly, by practicing abdominal holds, you can decrease your chances of exaggerated lumbar curve, a.k.a. lordosis.



YOU can do this! Abdominal holds can be great for anyone looking to tighten the core. It can also help in making you more aware of your posture.  Next time you find your back is tense and tired; check your rectus abdominis muscles!





~ Did you know? 

Biological Age is Modifiable!  Want to learn more?  Contact Boomers N Motion to Empower and Reset YOUR body’s physiology TODAY!