VOL. 28, NO. 2 The Milton H. Erickson Foundation Newsletter, Summer 2008

Cardio in the Zone:
Positive imaging and music for a focused
and enjoyable workout
9:24 minutes introductory material; 31:16 minutes voice with
background music, tempo of 105 beats per minute
ISBN: 0-9771008-4-7


Walking in the Zone:
Positive imaging and music for a focused
and enjoyable workout
9:49 minutes introductory material; 29:00 minutes of voice plus
background music, tempo of 80 beats per minute
ISBN: 0-9771008-3-9
By Albina Tamalonis, Ph.D.
Original music by Thomas Tamalonis-Olafsson

Walking in the Zone and Cardio in the Zone are two audio CDs designed to
help people enjoy exercise with less effort and more pleasure. Albina Tamalonis
has created a helpful aid for clients who are working on weight reduction and/or
trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle. She uses a creative combination of mindfulness,
hypnosis, and positive visualizations to guide listeners into a healthy and
happy routine. She states that her influences are Milton Erickson, Jeffrey Zeig,
Michel Yapko, Eva Banyai, and the Buddhist monk, Thich Nhat Hanh. Clearly
all of these approaches are utilized to harmonize with the carefully constructed
suggestions on the CDs.

These CDs are enhanced by original music created by Tamalonis’ husband,
Thomas Tamalonis-Olafsson. We always are happy to see a husband and wife
team, and these CDs are truly enhanced by the collaboration.
Each CD has two parts: an introductory track, and a longer exercise track. In
the introduction, Tamalonis presents an explanation of why regular exercise is
necessary for health. Then she lists the mental health benefits such as reducing
depression, decreasing pain, and increasing overall happiness. Next, she offers
persuasive facts such as 95% of those who succeed in weight loss, engage in regular
exercise. Finally, she presents the benefits of the particular type of exercise

Tamalonis defines “being in the zone” as an active alert place where people
feel good; when time slows down or speeds up; and movement is effortless. She
points out the benefits of exercising to music, and the science behind focusing
the mind with positive imaging, a technique used to effect changes.

The exercise tracks begin with music and simple mindfulness directions
including turning attention to the body, noticing the posture, and “Feel the beat
and generate some heat.” Then she directs listeners to her voice and directs attention
inwards. With her voice effectively pacing with the beat, she gives direct and
indirect suggestions that address several levels. The person who finds exercise
difficult or unpleasant will utilize the suggestions to feel enjoyment in the movement,
and benefit from suggestions for time to pass quickly. She offers support
and encouragement, and encourages self-supporting attitudes with positive affirmations,
such as, “Our bodies wanting it, enjoying it, easily, steadily enjoyably
restored by the movement.” A dream technique suggests that while moving to the
music listeners will have wonderful dreams of the future, about how they will
look and feel following exercise. Indirect therapeutic suggestions are interwoven
with metaphorical imagery from nature such as fish swimming upstream laying eggs
for the future. She suggests that the mind is freed by moving and evolves
on all levels, physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually. She deals with resistance
such as overeating or missing workouts as well. Toward the end, post-hypnotic
suggestions are offered that good feelings can grow from the feeling of
accomplishment for a good day, good night, and deep night’s sleep. A surprise
treat at the end is the cardio CD is the cheerful laughter of a young baby. We recommend
Walking in the Zone and Cardio in the Zone as helpful tools to give to clients!

Reviewed by

C. Alexander Simpkins, Ph.D. and Annellen M. Simpkins, Ph.D, San Diego, CA

© A. & A. Simpkins, The Milton H. Erickson Foundation. Used by permission.


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