Fitness column: You can reduce stress through organization

I want to talk organization and how good organizational skills can help you live a healthier, more stress-free life

I want to talk organization and how good organizational skills can help you live a healthier, more stress-free life.

It may not seem like this relates to health and fitness, but trust me, it does. If you are able to organize your daily activities in a way that keeps events in order, everything gets easier. With a structured, well-coordinated life, there is never a need to worry over what you need to do each day.

Let me first ask a couple of questions about the structure in your life. Have you ever thought about organization as it relates to your day-to-day activities? Do you plan your day, or do you just take things as they come?

I would like to clarify a little before everyone gets too upset with my strict schedule advising activities. What I am proposing isn't a stringent minute-by-minute program, but rather a general outline of what needs to be done in a day – kind of like a daily planner.

For example, at my house, I have a white board on the refrigerator where I write down what I want to accomplish during the day. It's not detailed, just a one- or two-word note about my daily goals. I plan the entire week Sunday night, and I add to it as I need to during the week.


Another little thing I do to organize my life is to lay my morning out the night before. By this, I mean I set out my clothes, make my lunch and prepare my coffee so it brews before I wake up. This makes the morning smooth and stress-free, which is a great way to start any day.

The planning philosophy works great in the gym as well. By knowing what you want to do before you walk into the facility (what exercise machines, how many reps and sets, etc.), your workout will be more efficient and you will accomplish your goals much more quickly.

In order to build an organizational life plan, you don't need to plot everything; you just need to do enough to alleviate some of the stress in your life. Simply layout a blueprint of activities and you'll be amazed in the difference in your overall stress level.


Try this apple sipper recipe that a reader passed along; and trust me, it's awesome. Start with a cup of low sugar apple juice and a cup of low-fat vanilla yogurt. Combine and blend in a blender for 30 seconds. That's it – pour and serve. But for variation, try adding a banana, nutmeg, cinnamon, frozen strawberries, frozen blueberries, peach slices, honey or any combination you might like. You can have a different sipper every night of the week and never repeat flavors.

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