31 May

Core Workout for Writers

Posted in Feel Better Write Better

Melissa Paris (Missy) is always stressing to me how important it is to have good posture and to work my core.  Here are some core exercises that you can do right next to your desk and without any equipment.  For more information about Melissa Paris, check out her blog and her Facebook page or connect with her on twitter (@Melissa_Paris). 

The core is the essential part of your body.  It helps you sit up straight at your desk and with proper training can prevent you from getting lower back pain.  So lets get to it!

• Plank hold for 30 seconds
• 20 Back Extensions: face down, hands laced behind head, lift upper body off the ground.
           Repeat 3 times


• 20 Bicycle Crunches
• Side Plank 15-30 seconds each side
           Repeat 3 times

Side Plank

• 20  Standing Side Bend with towel, 20 each side
• 20 Superman: face down, hands and feet lift off floor for 2 second count
           Repeat 3 times

Thanks for these awesome exercises, Missy! I’ll definitely be using them on my work breaks this week. (Even plank, which you know is my favorite :P)

Remember, you can get more information about Melissa Paris, at her blog and her Facebook page or by connecting with her on twitter (@Melissa_Paris). 


17 May

No-Weights Arm Workout for Writers by Melissa Paris

Posted in Feel Better Write Better

One of Melissa Paris’ (Missy) many talents is designing workouts that you can do without any equipment.  Check out this weight-free arm workout made especially for writers.  

For more information about Melissa Paris, check out her blog and her Facebook page or connect with her on twitter (@Melissa_Paris).

A weight free upper body workout for the hardworking writer!  It’s important to get up and move around throughout the day to keep your mind focused and your body healthy.  Be a better YOU and add some simple moves when taking your writing or editing breaks.  Here’s the routine: 

• 20 Mountain Climbers.   Start in push-up position, bringing one knee to your chest then back down.  Repeat with the other side.   Both sides counts as one repetition.  Go as fast as you can; you should be out of breath when doing this.

• 15 Push-Ups.  Hands should be shoulder width apart.  If you cannot hold your body up on all fours, lower the intensity by placing your knees on the floor.

Repeat 3 times

• 10 Tricep Dips.   Use a chair: place your hands on the seat with your knees bent in front of you.  Bend your arms and dip your body down below the chair seat, then back up.  You should feel the burn in the back of your arms.

• 15 Tricep Push-Ups.  Similar to the previous push-ups but with hands close together and elbows tucked in.

Repeat 3 times

• 30 Boxing Punches.  Once with each arm is one repetition.  Do this exercise without putting your arms down to rest.

• 15 arm circles.  Forward and backward without rest.

Repeat 3 times

Wow!  These exercises look fantastic.  I plan to use them during my writing breaks to help me get active and clear my head.  Also, stay tuned for a bonus post this Thursday featuring Missy’s tips for BookExpo America.  She has some excellent tips and ways to take care of yourself and make the most of the event!

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10 May

Leg Workouts Anywhere by Melissa Paris

Posted in Feel Better Write Better

What I love about Melissa Paris (Missy) is that she always knows how to come up with workouts that you can do anytime, anywhere.  This leg work out is perfect for when you take that 20 minute break from writing.  I don’t know about you all, but I’m planning to keep my yoga mat right by my desk so I can do these exercises while I let my writing thoughts percolate.

For more information about Melissa Paris, check out her blog and her Facebook page or connect with her on twitter (@Melissa_Paris).

Now, here’s Missy!

It’s time to stand up!!  You don’t have to step inside the gym to get fit and feel great.  Taking short breaks throughout the day will help you reach a healthy fitness level.  If you have time you can go through the whole routine if you have a few five-minute breaks you can split it up throughout your day.

Repeat this cycle 2-3 times depending on length of break.

20 Jumping Jacks

20 Bird-Dogs: Face down with knees and hands on the floor.  Raise opposite hand and leg straight at the same time for a 2 second count. Repeat on alternating sides until you have completed 20 on each side.

30 Squats: Keep feet shoulder width apart and push off from your heels.

30 Lying Hip Raises: Squeeze your butt at the top and make sure to keep your foot that’s on the ground flat.

20 Stationary Lunges: Make sure you do a 90 degree bend on each leg, then squeeze your butt at the top when you stand back up.  Remember to push off from your front heel.

20 Side Lunges:  Stand with both feet wide apart, toes facing forward.  Bend your right knee and shift your weight to the right side, keeping your left leg straight.  Come back to center.  Repeat the same thing on the left side and return to center.

Repeat all exercises 2-3 times depending on how long a break you’re taking.

This week, see if you can take some time every day to do something a little bit active.  These exercises are a great place to start and can be a nice break from writing, to help clear your head.  My goal is to try doing at least one cycle of these exercises every day this week.  Who’s with me?

Update: Missy just launched her new website today so check it out! 


04 May

Fitness for Writers Blog Series: Feel Better Write Better

Posted in Feel Better Write Better

I’ve been spending a lot of time at this computer lately.  I sit and write, write and sit.  Then one morning as I was hunched over these computer keys, I realized that if I make some small but meaningful changes to my nutrition and exercise, I’ll feel a whole lot better.  I’ll have more energy and feel more engaged when I’m working.  And then it hit me: if I feel better, I’ll write better.

It was like I just discovered gold!  It seemed so easy: just make some meaningful changes to my exercise and nutrition and I’ll be a better writer… inside and out.  Trouble is, I don’t know the first thing about nutrition or fitness, so I called up my good friend and trainer, Missy, and asked for some help.

Then I got another idea.  If this really works, I don’t want to keep it to myself, I’ll want to share it with all my writer friends (that’s you!).  So I invite you all to go on this adventure with me.  Every Tuesday for the next three weeks, Missy will guest post with fitness tips and exercises especially designed for writers or people who are computer-bound most of the day.

Kicking off this series is a brief intro on Missy.  For more about Missy, check out her blog and her Facebook page.

Introducing… Missy!

Missy’s passion for fitness and nutrition is contagious.  With 7 years of personal training experience and a degree in Nutrition and Dietetics, she knows how to help people reach optimal physical performance through proper nutrition.  She has certification in personal training from NASM, a TRX certification, is Pre-Post Natal Certified and trained in Integrated Flexibility.  Missy uses a diverse selection of exercises in her approach, including: boxing, plyometrics, yoga, weights and bands.

Always challenging herself to reach optimal health and fitness, Missy competes in the bikini division of the National Physique Committee.  She took 2nd place in her first competition, 4th in her second, and made it to a Nationals just a few short months later.  Missy is proud to say that unlike her fellow competitors who used traditional dieting, she went against the grain and incorporated an all natural, organic, approach to her own nutrition.

But perhaps Missy’s greatest strength is how she relates to people.  She takes a realistic approach to fitness and nutrition, and has a genuine love for making people feel good from the inside out.


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