We can’t separate the body and mind. In order to lead a healthier life, it’s important to train both the body and the mind. This can be achieved through movement and breath using fitness and meditation.

I noticed as my clients were getting very physically fit, many were still stressed, anxious, having problems sleeping, depressed, not able to focus or concentrate and the list goes on. As I began to teach my clients about mindfulness and meditation and build them a daily meditation practice many of these issues improved.

I believe that stress is the root of many health issues and while physical exercise can help, it is only part of the solution so we must also address the mind. I’d like to share a few fitness tips and a meditation technique to help decrease your stress and give you greater clarity so you can begin your journey towards leading a healthier life.

shutterstock_592315520 - (S.Agrios)

To start with, write down a goal and action plan. Next, commit and reassess so you can make the appropriate changes depending on your results. Let’s say your goal is to get into better shape. Be more specific and make it measurable. For example, I would like to lose 10lbs, fit into size 8 pants, have a 28 inch waist, run a 10km race in 60 minutes, ride 100km on my bike etc.

If you decide your goal is to lose 10lbs then your action plan would be to do a variety of cardio exercises (walk, swim, bike, run, stairs, cross country ski etc.) and watch what you eat. If you don’t have a lot of time my suggestion is to do 30 minutes of interval training. The other key is to watch what you eat since you can negate all the calories you burned in your workout in less than 5 minutes by eating the wrong thing. Simply put, be clear on your goal and if your behaviour (action plan) helps you reach your goal then do it. If it takes away from your goal then don’t do it. Make sure you consistently use this as a check to keep you on track.

Often our emotions get in the way of our goals which is why it’s important to work with our minds. This is where mindfulness and meditation come in. If we are calm and focused we can respond better to a situation as opposed to reacting to it. We are clearer and able to come from a place of choice by accessing our neutral mind.

Close your eyes, breath through your nostrils into your belly for a count of 4 (belly gets bigger as it fills up with air), suspend / hold your breath for 4 seconds (make sure everything is relaxed on the held breath), exhale for 4 seconds (belly gets smaller), suspend / hold your breath for 4 seconds. Repeat this 4 times.

Inhale for 4 seconds

Hold / suspend your breath for 4 seconds

Exhale for 4 seconds

Hold / suspend your breath for 4 seconds



Susan Agrios
Founder & CEO of Agrios Mindfitness

Susan Agrios is a former K-12 school teacher, an elite athlete with multi sport world medals, a fitness trainer and an internationally certified yoga & meditation teacher with advanced training in yoga nidra (guided meditation). With this unique background Susan dedicates her time to helping and motivating others to lead healthier lives both physically and mentally through fitness, yoga, and meditation. Working with schools, corporations, elite athletes and families Susan developed numerous successful programs: TIME OUT Mindfulness Kits & Trainings, Mindfitness Boot Camps and the Global Online Meditation Challenge. As well, she launched the first Agrios Mindfitness Triathlon (fitness, yoga and meditation) in Canada for thousands in schools. She leads retreats at conferences around the world. Over 9500 adults, teens and kids have taken her Mindfulness Challenge. Will you be next?

If you want to learn more about the body and mind, take a Mindfitness Boot Camp, Mindfulness Training or 40 day Mindfulness Challenge email Susan Agrios at [email protected] or go to www.agriosmindfitness.com

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