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Inspirational Quote


“Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn’t come from a store.”


—Dr. Seuss


My Christmas List For All My Readers and Clients


Dear Santa,

I have worked very hard all year. I have done my best to inspire my readers and clients to achieve Total Fitness. Thank you for helping my new book, What Is Healing? Awaken Your Intuitive Power for Health and Happiness (Atlanta: Total Fitness, 2013) to get to No. 1 on Amazon in TWO categories: No. 1 in Medicine and Psychology and No. 1 in Alternative Medicine Reference Books. https://amzn.to/18V5amx

Because I have been pretty good this year, I am asking for the following things:

  1. Please get all my readers and clients to exercise five days a week next year, no matter what. Please help them to find movement and activities that they enjoy enough to do regularly. In fact, maybe even leave a note that if they want their presents next year they should promise to work out regularly in 2014. You can always negotiate – people actually listen to you.
  2. Please bring everybody a juicer for Christmas – provided of course you can find one that will fit down their chimney of course. That way maybe everybody can finally get enough fruits and vegetables in their diet.
  3. Please get everybody to start a regular stress management program. Even though you and your elves work around the clock this time of year, I know you have learned how to take time off, enjoy a nap or two and have fun with your friends. Thanks for being such a great example by being a happy guy.
  4. A good Christmas gift for everybody would be a meditation CD, an eye bag to cover the eyes when meditating and/or maybe even a zafu. These will definitely fit down the chimney and will go a long way towards promoting peace on earth.
  5. Maybe everybody would like to give or receive What Is Healing? for a present. That way people can learn many new ways of being happier and healthier.
  6. Instead of chocolate and candy, I will be leaving a healthy goodie for you once you make it down our chimney. You can choose from Raw Food Apple Pie, Raw Food Chocolate Fondue, Raw Food Carrot Cake or lots of other goodies by visiting my website at: https://unlimitedenergynow.com/recipe-gallery/page/2/ I know it’s hard to make up your mind between that many yummy healthy desserts, but I am sure you will find something you like even better than junk food.
  7. Gifts that definitely fit in everybody’s stocking include gift certificates for Total Fitness, including one on one sessions and coupons for yoga and qi gong class.
  8. Another great idea is to give everybody a water bottle in their stocking so they will finally remember to drink enough water.
  9. Peace on earth, good will towards men is exceptionally easy when everybody takes a little bit better care of themselves. I ask that you help everybody understand that everything they do to be healthier and more fit is exactly what they need to do to be a better parent, a better spouse and more motivated at work.
  10. If any of your reindeer need extra petting during the year, you are welcome to drop by my studio and visit me and Belle. We love visits from fun people like you.

Dear Santa,

Thank you Santa from one of your biggest fans!

Catherine Carrigan

First Place Float, 2012 Watkinsville, Georgia Christmas Parade

First Place Float, 2012 Watkinsville, Georgia Christmas Parade


Why Exercise Alone Does Not Work


Just last week, I was at the Post Office mailing off a package to a client in another city.

The gentleman behind the counter noticed my return address, Total Fitness, 1951 Northside Drive, Atlanta, Georgia, 30318.

“You do fitness?” he asked me.

“Yes,” I replied, “for the past 24 years.”

As we chatted further, he could not believe that I am – as of this writing – 54 years old.

“You must be doing something right,” he said, asking for my business card.


Years ago, when I decided to start my own business, I chose the name Total Fitness.

Intuitively, I recognized that in the world of exercise, not only do fads come and go – I can think of low impact aerobics, bench classes, Jazzercise and Callanetics to name just a few – but also that being fit and healthy has a lot more to do than simply working out.


A few weeks earlier, I had been down in my hometown of Savannah, Georgia. My mother, Jane Espy, and my niece, Sarah Jane Schulze, and I got up early one Saturday morning to cheer on a neighbor who was participating in the Rock ‘n Roll Marathon.

As we stood on Liberty Street watching the marathoners jog by, what struck me was how so few of them had a physique that you might pick out from a crowd as an actual athlete or even a person you would describe as enjoying a healthy body weight – even though there they all were, jogging or running 26 miles that chilly November morning.

Some of them were even clearly running injured with a knee brace.

The next morning at church, my mother and I saw a lady walking in crutches who proudly proclaimed that she had finished the marathon the day before, even though she had torn the ligaments in her knee.


Over the years I have learned one simple fact.

Exercise alone does not make a person fit or healthy.


Is exercise a crucial component of being fit and staying healthy?

Without question, yes.

In my opinion, exercise is an essential aspect of achieving fitness and maintaining not only physical but also mental health and energetic vitality.

I can give you 101 reasons why in a perfect world you would want to exercise each and every day of your life in some form or fashion, but what I am saying here is that there is more to it than even that.


Personally, I think each individual has to find the right workout regime for his or her body, a quest that has everything to do not just with your age and energy level but also your psychology.

Catherine Carrigan and Virginia Wright

Catherine Carrigan and Virginia Wright

You EARN Your Body, Each And Every Day


The simple truth is that what works the very best is an integrated approach.





You EARN your body, each and every day, by these four components.


The body you have today is a reflection of how well you have exercised consistently, how you have managed your attitude, how well you rest and the quality of your nutrition.


If you sign up for my newsletter, you will receive a simple outline that I share with all new readers describing the key components of EARN, Exercise, Attitude, Rest and Nutrition that I personally consider most important.


I want you to understand why, when you fire up your health and fitness program by operating on all four cylinders, you can achieve amazing results.


And the truth is that you don’t have to over exercise, you don’t have to starve yourself, you simply have to find balance in each of the four areas.


I could tell you story after story of individuals who had maybe mastered one area but not the others.


A fitness expert I know travels far and wide sharing his knowledge about a particular area of exercise. Meanwhile, he skips meals and is extremely sleep deprived. Result? Even though he is a master, his body doesn’t demonstrate on the outside the knowledge he has inside his head.


A couple of years ago, I attended an exercise class with a wonderful instructor. She was charming, she was fun and she was severely overweight. The dear teacher had gotten up early that morning and had seen several clients before leading our class. Afterwards, she shared with me the details of her own exercise regimen, which was quite punishing. Once again, she got the exercise piece down pat but her body did not reflect the results she wanted because she was overworked, overtired and over exercised.


A new client years ago shared with me about how she got up every morning at 4:30 so that she could work out with her husband before he went to work. She felt that if she did not exercise with him that he would not get the workouts done on his own. Meanwhile, she was sleep deprived to the point that she felt depressed and short tempered with her children. She did not understand why she could not lose weight, despite the fact she was exercising very hard about five or six days a week.


Do any of these stories sound familiar?


I share the stories about fellow exercise practitioners because even us experts often have to learn the hard way.



When I finally stopped seeing clients at 6 a.m. and got enough sleep, my body responded much better and finally reflected the effects of my many years of consistent exercise.


Belle and Kiwi in Christmas Parade Regalia

Belle and Kiwi in Christmas Parade Regalia


EARN Your Body To Balance Your Hormones


Finding the balance of EARN – Exercise, Attitude, Rest and Nutrition – is crucial because without this balance you will not be able to find hormonal balance in your own body.


You hold fat in your body based on where your hormones are out of balance. Feel free to read my many years of newsletters explaining. The two obvious places are your belly – where you store fat if you have excess cortisol – and inside your hip bone – where you store fat if you have problems with your insulin.


The two most important hormones in your body are cortisol and insulin.


Cortisol is your stress hormone, which can be thrown out of balance by high intensity aerobic exercise where your heart rate exceeds 90 beats a minute, emergency emotions such as anger and anxiety, inadequate rest or going to bed too late,

skipping meals and inflammatory foods including caffeine, alcohol, tobacco and sugar.


Insulin keeps your blood sugar under control, and can be thrown out of balance by either lack of exercise or too much, emotional stress, going to bed past midnight and not enough sleep as well as high sugar, junk-food-laden diets.


Even if you exercise regularly, if you neglect any one area – Exercise, Attitude, Rest or Nutrition – you will get nowhere in improving your body composition, which is why, in my professional opinion, so many people give up working out when they could simply become better informed and work smarter, not harder, instead.


The positive side is that when we begin to broaden our perspective and embrace not only working out regularly but resolving our core emotional issues, clearing self sabotage programs and improving our motivation, we naturally want to get enough sleep, heal our adrenal glands and find healthier foods to be more energizing and nurturing.


As we embrace EARN – Exercise, Attitude, Rest and Nutrition – we discover that we no longer need either so many or even any medications and deep levels of healing occur naturally.


In fact, I believe that Exercise, Attitude, Rest and Nutrition work better for prevention and even treatment of all kinds of illnesses because we learn through consistent practice how to be a healthy person, inside and out.


Exercise can be rewarding on so many levels, and for many of us, it is a gateway to learning more about ourselves, including how to take care of not just our body but also our soul as we discover that this process is the true path to overall well-being.


Catherine and Belle in Christmas Parade Regalia

Catherine and Belle in Christmas Parade Regalia


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