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The Pulse - August 2013

In this issue:Toggle Table of Content

August 10th Potluck Party

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Cha Cha Cha Changes

By Chris Litten

If you’re struggling with improving your health and fitness, what one thing could you change today that would offer the most impact? If I had a crystal ball, I could give you a definitive answer that was specific to you and only you. Unfortunately, I don’t. However, I do have the next best thing, knowledge of how to make lasting change. What does this knowledge have to do with getting in better physical condition? Knowing what that one thing is and implementing it is exactly what you need to be successful. Let me explain.

When most of us set out to make changes to improve our health and fitness, we start out with too much ambition. Now, understand that ambition is a key ingredient towards finding success. However, when in pursuit of lasting change, a little bit of it goes a long way. Think of a time when you set out to get in better shape and were only successful for a few weeks, maybe a couple of months if you were really working at it.

Now, as you visit that experience, take a count of how many things you changed at once. If you are like the majority of us ambitious humans who want change and want it yesterday, you will recognize that you probably adjusted at least 3 things from one day to the next. See if this resembles you. You decided tomorrow’s the day. You went to bed a little earlier to get up and get outside for a walk before setting off to work. You went for the salad today at lunch instead of the burger. And, you decided against the late night snack. In its place, you opted for a wonderful assortment of celery, carrots, frozen fruit bites, and water to wash it all down.

At first glance we would all agree, one, we’ve been there. And two, this person is off to a great start. How much weight did they end up losing? Here is the hard truth: This example, consisting of multiple changes from one day to the next, is exactly why most fitness plans come to a screeching halt so early on. We try to change too many things at once. Did you know that your chances of success when changing only 1 thing are about 85%? That is with just 1 change. Add another and your adherence drops to less than 35%. Leo Babauta, author of The Power of Less argues in his book that we seek to change too many things all at once. I think he is dead on.

How can you affect change successfully? Let’s explore some thoughts together.
Start with one habit; ideally a habit that’s small, manageable, and as practical as possible. When in doubt, simply take your one assigned task and reduce the difficulty by half. For example, if your longer term goal is to eat 2 vegetables every day, start with one first. Find success with being consistent with one then add the second one.
Make your tasks clear and specific.  “Eat better” is no help at all. Even “eat more fruits and veggies” is too nebulous. So put a number on it. For example:
• Instead of “Work out more”, say, “Do 5 minutes of interval exercise today”.
• Instead of “Eat more vegetables”, say, “Eat 1/2 cup of vegetables with each meal today”.
• Instead of “Improve your posture”, say, “Get up from your chair every hour today.”

Seeking to change our health and fitness for the better is a great pursuit. You will most likely realize more benefits than you even imagined were possible if you adopt a systematic approach. Make lasting changes instead of endlessly sampling radical plans from recycled magazine articles.  Permanent change requires that you give each small shift in behavior the time and space to root. Refrain from making another shift until the primary one becomes a natural part of your lifestyle. Remember, change one thing and you have about an 85% chance of success. Change two things at one time, and you are 65% likely to fail. What number are you aiming for?

Speaking of Changes…..

For those of you who may not know, Nate, Amelia, and Nick are transitioning from BodyBasics to new adventures in their lives that take them out of state. I tried to buy them all back but when you are priceless, it is hard to come up with enough funds to pay. I am sure you will share in missing them around the studio as I will. We learned, we debated, we shot at each other with paint balls, and we grew to care quite a bit for each other. To Nate, Amelia, and Nick, thank you for your contributions of time and self to BodyBasics. I am so grateful for both. ~ Chris

It’s often been said, and I tend to agree, that adversity is life’s greatest teacher. My time in Tucson has been educational. As I return to home and family in Washington my heart is light. Despite the challenges in my brief stay, I will always remember my time here fondly. It will not be the plentiful Mexican cuisine, the sweltering desert heat, iconic vegetation, or volatile monsoon weather for which I reminisce. The people at BodyBasics are what will stay with me. I have not had the pleasure to work with a more dedicated group of selfless professionals. BodyBasics is a ‘family’ business in the true sense of the word and that extends to the exceptional collection of hard working human beings that are the clients. I will be eternally grateful for the opportunity provided me here for both professional and personal growth. I will continue my journey in promoting health and well-being in the Northwest knowing that I learned more in my time at BodyBasics than in my entire re-education process.

Thanks for everything!

Nate Burrous

I have some great news and I have some not so great news! The good news: My husband Chris has accepted an offer to work for Lockheed Martin in Fort Worth beginning August 19. The bad news: My husband Chris has accepted an offer to work for Lockheed Martin in Fort Worth beginning August 19. I am ecstatic to be going back to Texas, but it is also bittersweet moment for me. I can say with certainty that each of you know how much I have wanted to move back to Texas, so getting to do so is the sweet part. The bitter part is that I never realized how hard it would be for me to actually leave when the time came. BodyBasics has become so special to me and changed my life in so many ways that I don’t want to say goodbye. So rather than this being a good-bye note, I want this to be a thank you note. I want to thank both the clients and trainers at BodyBasics for becoming the family that I desperately needed when I moved to Tucson. I never imagined that while living in Tucson, AZ I would gain a family consisting of about 100 members! I have been blessed in so many ways and I am so grateful. Thank you for for taking care of me and making me a better person.

Come visit me in Texas y’all!

Amelia Olson

Dear BodyBasics Family,

As most of you know my wife Tera and I have prayed, considered and decided to relocate to Denver, Colorado. Our love for a cooler climate, four seasons, and a longer ski season await us. The only hard part is that all of you from BodyBasics cannot come with us. We will miss all of you, as everybody we have come in contact with has been an amazing part of this journey. During the past three years working for BodyBasics I have been able to “learn and grow” so much. All of you have been such a huge part of that. I simply cannot thank you enough. We will continue to keep in touch, and always remember our BodyBasics Family!

We will miss all of you very much!

Nick McKim

Floor Based Warm-Up

By:Chris Litten

Doug Raine with his wife, Bobbie

Client Spotlight

Doug Raine

has been working out at BodyBasics for two and a half years with Nick. When he first arrived he had troubles with his back and hips and when he was driving it was hard for him to turn his head to check for cars in the other lane. He has been very consistent and dedicated; I can count on one hand the times he has cancelled during his time here. As a result of his training, Doug has strengthened his hips, improved his posture and is able to more fully enjoy his retirement because he has a stronger more healthy back. During his retirement, Doug has emerged as a world renowned caricature wood carver. He was also a fighter pilot during the Korean War and I am grateful for his service to our country.

Zucchini Ribbon Salad

by IsaChandra


  • 1 cup diced fresh tomato (from 1 average sized tomato)
  • 10 large basil leaves, thinly sliced (plus extra small leaves, to garnish)
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 lb zucchini, peeled into ribbons (see note above)
  • Sea salt
  • Fresh black pepper


In a large mixing bowl, toss together the tomato, basil, vinegar, olive oil and garlic. Add a big pinch of salt and some fresh black pepper. Let that sit as you prep the zucchini.

When zucchini is ready, add to the bowl and using your hands, toss to coat. Taste for salt. Garnish with basil leaves and serve!

Chris, Maureen, Nick, Amber, Mike, Nate, Amelia
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