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Move. Your Life Depends on It.

Submitted by on June 21, 2011 – 1:01 pm17 Comments
Nancy Santana


By Nancy Santana

Nancy Santana

Way back then...

The moment it hit me: I was laying there on a hospital bed with machines hooked up to me. I was told they were going to keep me overnight to run a few stress tests the next day.

I thought: “I am only in my 30s I shouldn’t be here. I need to get control of my health.”

If we are in poor health, chances are we have several health issues. I had several — from extremely high blood pressure, depression, headaches, back pain and aches everywhere. I took control of my life. It was that or spend the rest of my life going to the doctor and taking pills.

Tips I found useful were simple.

  • Change your nutrition habits (One of thing that was causing most of my health issues was my weight).
  • Find an exercise program that you love. If you enjoy running start jogging, if you enjoy riding your bike do it, if you enjoy walking, make it a family time to walk and get healthy.
  • Find a friend or family member who seeks the same goals. Having a buddy to keep you accountable, and has the same desire to get fit and healthy, will keep you both motivated.
  • Keep a food journal. You will see your habits in writing. I remember I always said to myself “I didn’t eat much today” but once I started keeping track I realized I did need to change some things
  • Don’t give up! We all have ups and downs during this journey to living a healthier lifestyle, but I am here to tell you, never ever give up on your goal, you can do it!

When I started my journey in 2007, there was a quote I made mine – “Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going” – Jim Rohn.

I love this quote.

You need to find that self motivation inside you – the desire – that commitment – to get you started. Remember this is your health, your life, & your future! Once you get started, it will become a habit. It’ll become second nature like brushing your teeth and combing your hair.

The morning after my hospitalization, I was put under several stress-related tests to make sure I had not had a heart attack. Thank God it wasn’t related to my heart.

That was four years ago, and today I am happy to say I feel better than I did when I was in my 20s. How do I do it?

I teach my hour-long cardio kickboxing class three times a week. I also do weight training twice a week and watching what I eat is a must. I don’t eat anything after 7 p.m. If I have a snack at night it’s an apple or fruit and I drink plenty of water.

I want to encourage you to start today. I promise you will be happy you did!

Y tu?

What are you going to start doing for yourself right now?

Nancy Santana, a fitness coach and instructor, lives in Chicago and publishes a motivational exercise and better living site.

Share, por favor!


  • I really like it! Yesterday I went back to the gym and started my food journal, so this post is perfect for me!
    “Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going” – Jim Rohn.
    I WILL KEEP THIS IN MIND. Something to add… when you have small children, finding a gym that offers childcare is the best way to meet your goals and make it work!

  • Ericka says:

    I really need to MOVE! I’m starting to walk during my lunchtime because I’m behind desk so much. Next thing I realize, it’s been 6 hours. Thanks for the motivation.

  • Thanks for the tips. So glad you’re doing much better now! This is a great reminder that our bodies can only take so much.

  • This post was another reminder how much I need to move my booty! Running around after toddler twins & a teen is helpful but proper diet and regular exercise is really what I need. Thanks for the ‘ear pulling’ and reminding me that my health is important.

  • Maura says:

    Great story. I personally find that having a workout buddy and a food journal are essential, especially when I’m testing new recipes for my blog. I often try to go for a walk during my lunch break (and also sit outside if it’s not winter) so that I can get fresh air. I also keep a 1.5 liter bottle of water on my desk at work and try to drink a whole one (and refill it if I can and drink that too) each day. They’re little things that add up to make a difference, and if you do poorly one day, you can always start fresh the next day!

  • Patty says:

    I started exercising for weight loss and found I enjoy it so much. Sometimes we need a wake up call to get moving. Thank you for sharing your story…very inspiring!

  • Adriana Iris says:

    I am going to start salsa lessons.

  • sweetlife says:

    Wonderful tips. Thank you for sharing your story. I am learning that I deserve the time to take care of myslef, for many mothers we worry about everyone else first. I find if I feel healthy and strong I am even a better mom, wife and friend!


    • Bonnie,

      You nailed it – as mothers we do put everyone and everything first before realizing that we need to take care of “ME” first. I also feel we should not feel guilty for taking an hour or so out of the day to workout. I think it is also important to set examples for our children since the obesity rate for our youth is sky high.
      As parents we teach our children values, to respect others, well we need to teach them that living healthy is important too.

      Take Care!

  • It is all about breaking bad habits! I am also trying to get into a better routine but find it difficult due to lack of time. Will definitely try again. Thanks for the post and motivation!

  • Mariana says:

    Inspiring post! Thank you for the tips :)

  • I’m constantly moving running after my toddler, but need to add something extra to my life in the form of exercise. Something that I can emerge myself in. Gotta give this some thought. The truth is I don’t want to change my eating habits. I try to eat good once a day at least. Add a salad here, and pick up a piece of fruit instead of chips. Thanks for reminding me that health is KING!

  • Hi,

    I just want to say thank you all for your comments.
    And I am blessed to have shared my story here at TiKiTiKiBlog!
    If you on Facebook & look me up if you would like to connect with me – If I can support/motivation/encourage you in anyway I would be more than happy to do so….Take care & God Bless!!


  • Yvette says:

    Thanks for the reminder. I was doing so well, and then fell off the exercise wagon due to my hectic schedule. I plan to peel my bootie off my office chair TODAY and start moving again. I love to dance and have found bollywood and Zumba classes to be my workouts of choice. Wish me luck!

  • Mari says:

    Nancy this is a great article and very inspiring… I too fall off the wagon every once in a while… but i found something that helps remind me everyday to keep moving and to remind me that i’m doing something just for me… and that is the Daily Challenge… it’s a website sponsored by the Chopra center… and it sends you an email with a challenge to perform for that day. Depending on the track you’re on it could be to give yourself a foot massage or to go and take a walk… it keeps score of points you earn for doing it, sharing your thoughts, etc… you can also invite friends to join you in the challenge [it's great because they could be across the country or across the street and you motivate each other..] additionally of course i’m trying to get into a daily yoga routine in the mornings.. and so you’re exactly right “Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going”. So here’s to keep it going…

    Thanks you for the added motivation with your story. :)

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