Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things. ~Philippians 4:8 Breathing is a function of your body that you do automatically - but it can also be done mindfully. When you remember to breathe deeply, you can actually calm yourt body and mind. By slowing your breathing, you can lower your heart rate and your stress level. Breathing is a powerful way to strengthen your body. Mindful breathing reminds us to slow down and think about our choices, whether that concerns our faith, our food, our focus or our fitness. For example, when we take a few deep breaths before we eat, we approach our eating more consciously. We eat less and enjoy it more. Here are a few other simple things you can do to be more mindful today: * Chew each bite multiple times. You will improve digestion fo your food and enjoyment of it. * Don't reward exercise by thinking, I just walked 2 miles, so I can have a cupcake (or...?) Exercise is its own reward. And remember if you have just one 20-ounce soda, you have to walk 4.5 miles to burn it off. (yes, really.) If you eat one super-sized meal, you have to RUN 4 MILES A DAY FOR A WEEK to burn off that one meal. (YES, REALLY!) You cannot exercise your way out of a bad diet. * Don't shop hungry. If you are hungry when you shop, you are much more likely to buy junk food, quick snacks, processed foods, and fewer fruits and veggies. * Buy in bulk, but then put the food into smaller bags or containers. We tend to finish what we start! FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Today take some time to breathe slowly and deeply. Regularly, repeatedly set aside time to quiet yourself and refocus your thoughts on the greatness and power of God. God can breathge new life into you and your efforts to become healthier.