Being an avid non-runner, I look for opportunities to avoid the exercise at all costs. However, with the Sloth Army Running Club in full swing and meeting twice a week for runs, I can’t escape it. Coming up with running workouts on Thursdays is pretty easy, I have a slew of them. Coming up with interesting longer runs for Sundays is somewhat more difficult. I decided for today’s trail run, I’d revert a little to my background as an educator/naturalist and give an interpretive narration throughout the 2 mile run. Continue reading Interpretive Nature Run
I’m reading an interesting book called Triggers: Creating Behaviors That Last, Becoming the Person You Want to Be by Marshall Goldsmith, and I just had the most interesting insight from reading the book.
When discussing our most powerful triggers, they tend to be one of four specific types- Encouraging triggers (associated with what we want), discouraging triggers (what we don’t want), productive triggers (what we need), and counter-productive triggers (what we don’t need). Continue reading Positive Reinforcement for Punishing Situations
I’m working on the Enrichment section for my book Zookeeper’s Guide to Fitness. Enrichment was one of my favorite aspects of being a zookeeper. Keeping the animals mentally and physically active, increasing naturalistic behaviors, and engaging them in more dynamic ways was the epitome of zookeeping, personally. Continue reading Boredom is a Four Letter Word
The past few weeks I have been engrossed in books with similar theme as A Zookeeper’s Guide to Fitness. I finished Level Up Your Life by Steve Kamb last week, and I’ve started on a new fitness/diet book called The Game On! Diet by Krista Vernoff and Az Ferguson. Vernoff is the executive producer (or is it Executive Producer, I’m asking for a friend) for Grey’s Anatomy, so she has a strong writing background, but I’m not digging her approach with the book. It was a little difficult to adjust to her style, although I understand her process. The book is about really having fun with your fitness, and taking things up a notch by not just turning our fitness into a game, but making it a team-oriented, competitive game as well. Continue reading The Game is Afoot!
I’ve been on the fence about how to present this seemingly delicate subject matter, and the most comfortable platform is obviously writing on my blog where only a small limited number of people will actually see it to dispute or argue with me. For some reason, the topic of sugar versus honey is very touchy. Continue reading Satisfying Your Sweet Tooth the ZooFit Way
When I first came home from the Clicker Expo last month, I complained that I didn’t get out of it as much as I would have liked. Looking back on my notes, however, I think I may have spoke too soon. There were quite a few presentations and speakers that, well, spoke to me on a personal level. Not just for animal training, but for writing, for fitness, and for life. Continue reading Clicker Worthy Moments from Clicker Expo, Part II
I have been struggling with how to convey my most important fitness message to my audience for some time. My main motivation and inspiration for getting fit was conservation. Doing my part to stay healthy and help the planet. But it has also been to create a healthy, positive attitude about our fitness, and conservation. This is where it gets tricky, and I have wrangled with my message. The situations our favorite animals are facing are dire. They need immediate, and often drastic action. To make the most positive impact, we need to change a lot of our eating habits, consumer habits, and even our workout habits. But as I’ve been told, learning about the dire situations our planet faces doesn’t actually inspire people, it brings them. How do I, as a trainer utilizing positive reinforcement put a positive spin on a dire situation and inspire people to get fit not just for themselves, but for the planet? Continue reading Positive Spin on a Dire Situation
One of the most incredible experiences of my career was the chance to work with elephants at Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle. To build a unique and special relationship with such an enormous creature that could easily have crushed me as much as look at me, was, in a word, awesome. Continue reading Consistency and Patience- Watoto’s Rumble
It’s been one week since I started on my Daily Writing Habit. I haven’t officially rewarded myself yet, but I have downloaded a couple iPhone apps that help me track my healthy habits. It’s weird how completely satisfying it is to check off the “completed” box next to the habits I’m trying to form. Continue reading Progression Check-in
The person who is writing a book on developing healthy habits through principles of animal training with operant conditioning and positive reinforcement is having trouble sticking to her own habits of WRITING said book on developing healthy habits….. Continue reading Creating Writing Habit: Take Two