Fresh Air – Beyond Diet & Exercise

Mediation is more than just breath and fresh air.

If you calm the mind, hidden potential that lives inside you can rise to the surface.

Have a seat and turn off your phone; let's take a quick break together. Use this time while you read today to breathe slow and smooth through your nostrils only. Push your tongue to the roof of your mouth and relax in a quiet space. The parasympathetic nervous system has a bulk of afferent nerve endings around your cilia through the nasal passages.

Activation of this system will temporarily down-regulate your sympathetic functions and create physiological and emotional peace.

Basically, the more you deep breathe in and out of your nose, the more you will ultimately relax and change your state. In as little as 5 minutes you will lower your blood pressure, shift alkaline, change your blood pH and enhance your mood.

The rat race we are all in and the fast pace of life reminds us how rejuvenating it feels to stop and just breathe.

In this post, two wellness experts will share their secrets about the balance of relaxation, meditation, variety and fresh air for achieving optimal wellness. In an industry where most health gurus are preaching the “work hard and play hard” mentality, these ladies are going against the grain.

First up is Certified Personal Trainer and founder of, Elyssa Tommer, who shares her success about what really works with her clientele and herself >>

What does it mean to be “healthy“? According to the World Health Organization, “the main determinants of health include the social and economic environment, the physical environment and the person's individual characteristics and behaviors. Generally, the context in which an individual lives is of great importance on his life quality and health status.”

Most people think that to be healthy one must join a gym, do cardio, and follow a strict diet, but that is not the case.   Your environment and how you view your environment effects your health a great deal. Where you live, your job environment, the people you interact with, and even your gym will effect how you relate to yourself and your health. For example, if your home is full of sunlight, fresh air and is decorated with live plants you may experience a sense of feeling happier and healthier. If your work place is drenched with artificial lighting and air, at the end of the day you may feel tired and worn out even though you were just sitting all day. How do you interact with the people in your life? Do the people that surround you empower and support you? And what about your gym? Is it clean? Are the people friendly? Too crowded?

Does it inspire you? It should. So you can see that environmental factors can play a big roll in how you feel – which will directly effect your health. Most of the time you wont even be aware of it.   Sometimes we can and sometimes we can't change our environment, but we can change ourselves and how we interact with the world. Yes eating healthy (no dieting), exercising, and getting plenty of sleep will help improve your health but to really take on “being & living healthy” you can try the following tips-

-Get outside. If you work inside all day take a break and step outside. Stand in the sun for some instant feel good energy. Take a few deep breaths to refresh your system with some “real” air.

-Bring the outdoors inside. Put some plants or fresh flowers around your house or work area.

-Plan an outdoor activity. Go for hike, visit your local farmers market, ride your bike, etc.

-Practice positivity. Yep… practice – we all want to get sucked into the negative things that are going on in ours worlds. Gossip and complaining… these things negatively effect your health.

Be mindful  of how your talking, what your saying, and your body language. The saying “if you don't have anything nice to say don't say anything at all” is a good start but instead of not saying anything at all – say something positive. -Find a gym or outdoor activity that inspires you. Where you workout should inspire and bring you joy. Enough said. -Stay calm. Meditating just 10 minutes a day can drop stress levels a great deal. Just sit quickly and focus on your breath. -Ask questions. Talk to a personal trainer, holistic practitioner or nutritionist about anything you don't understand. Their jobs are to have you be healthy.

Simple things that when practiced and put in place can drastically improve your health. I practice all these things in my own life and experience having radiant health. So be aware of the world around you and how it effects you, then do something about it – your health depends on it! Have fun!!!

Certified Personal Trainer and yoga instructor Ann Taylor Lashbrook has been educating her clients for years about the benefits of yoga practice, exercise variety and taking the time to truly create what you desire >>   Whether you are a Paleo crossfitter that follows Chek, Poliquin or a yogi rock climber who swears by raw food, we can all agree that all the interval training, kale, forearm balancing and kettle bells in the world can’t effect lasting change in your body unless you do some inner work also! So, in the words of Todd Durkin, “Get your mind right.” There is so much great science and truth to aid you in reaching total body wellness, but if you aren’t having fun and manifesting joy, what’s the point? In the 7 years I have spent in the fitness industry I have gained tons of knowledge.

All studies aside, the clients, fellow trainers, and athletes get the best results are committed to a deeply positive attitude and are perhaps humble enough to believe that raising their vibration might lead to raising their percentage of lean muscle mass.   “If you get the inside right, the outside will fall into place.” –Eckhart Tolle I am really excited to be a trainer at a time when people are beginning to realize that diets don’t work, oatmeal isn’t made of heart health magic, and long duration cardio isn’t just boring, but actually can (at best) only make you skinny fat. If you're a regular on Josh’s blog you know that he can take the guess work out of what foods work for you and shine some light on awesome training techniques. So now that you are feeling better living without sugar and gluten what’s next?

I can tell you that as a trainer who has traveled the US as a health coach, the answer to that question is all about feeling good and raising your vibration. That can look as simple as reaching for better feeling thoughts, as stated in the work of Jerry and Ester Hicks, or just doing what you love!   My personal practice involves getting out to the mountains to rock climb as much as possible, playing with new training toys in the gym alongside my clients and athletes, taking time to meditate in addition to saying my mantras with my prayer beads, and practicing yoga that gets me out of my head and into my heart. Beyond all this doing, please know that there is beauty in the present moment and whatever allows you to slow down enough to find this is of great value.   My recommendations in this moment are as follows: you are a lean, mean, lifting machine and want to take your life to the next level, check out Super Coach-Michael Neill’s work, or grab an audio download of any Eckhart Tolle to go a little deeper into dismantling your silly ego.

If you are a yo-yo dieter and want some freedom to allow the weight to drop away forever, commit to the principles taught by Marianne Williamson in a Course in Weight Loss, Sondra Ray’s The Only Diet There Is, and/or Geneen Roth’s Women Food and God. If you are looking to get outside and try some mountain adventures hire an AMGA (American Mountain Guide Assoc.) guide to take you up a mountain, onto a rock face, or down some back country runs. And lastly, if you haven’t found a yoga class you liked, try another!   There are many schools of thought in yoga from restorative yoga, which heals you on a cellular level while lying around and letting go, to the playful gymnastic styles of the acroyogis, and everything in between. Honestly, I have found the most enjoyable classes are practices with instructors who are knowledgeable about alignment but make you laugh while leaving the room open both physically and mentally! Lastly, in the words of Patricia Moreno, creator of Intensati, “Live a life you love in a body you love, NOW!”

Ann Taylor Lashbrook is a certified personal trainer and yoga instructor who has recently moved back to Los Angeles after spending a few years traveling the country as a health educator.  When she is not out in the mountains rock climbing, she is grateful to be working as a personal trainer, life coach, and supporting people in their personal yoga practice.  AT has taught every group fitness class you can imagine and is excited to be a leader in bringing the transformational work of Intensati (a fusion of affirmations with movements from yoga, boxing, and dance) from NYC to LA!  Feel free to contact her via Email, Facebook, or Twitter while she finishes work on her new website –


Elyssa Tommer has been personal training since 2002 and is currently a master trainer at The Sporting Club in La Jolla, California. Certified through the National Academy Of Sports Medicine, she has been featured in SHAPE Magazine and numerous workout videos. Elyssa is hike leader for VAVI Sports and Social and a lover of the outdoors. She trains athletes, runners, house wives, swimmers, dads, moms, cyclists, the average 9 – 5 worker,  rock climbers, skateboarders and hairstylists. Her belief is to design individual programs starting with stretching and corrective exercises, then eventually leading to a butt-kicking sweat session. With extensive experience in knee surgeries, shoulder issues, diabetes and obesity, she focuses on keeping her clients mentally strong. “My job is more than just delivering a workout,” says Elyssa, “I’m out to have people love their lives and be able to have a healthy body to keep them moving through life. I encourage, motivate and I do not let anyone slack. I push my clients to the edge but never over. I try to make a difference in their lives one day and one session at a time…” [email protected]

Questions? Start here

About the author: Josh Trent, NASM-CES, CPT, HLC, is a corrective exercise specialist and participatory sports technology expert with over 9 years in the fitness industry. His passion is to accelerate wellness evolution through the power of the Digital Health and Quantified Self movements. You can follow him on Twitter @wellnessforce, or through his website




About Josh Trent

Josh Trent lives in Austin, Texas with his love Carrie Michelle, son Novah, daughter Nayah + a cat named Cleo. He is the host of the Wellness + Wisdom Podcast and the creator of the BREATHE: Breath + Wellness Program. Josh has spent the past 20+ years as a trainer, researcher + facilitator discovering the physical and emotional intelligence for humans to thrive in our modern world. Helping humans LIBERATE their mental, emotional, physical, spiritual + financial self through podcasts, programs + global community that believe in optimizing our potential to live life well.

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