5 Easy Steps to #beabetteryou

5 Easy Steps to #beabetteryou

#beabetteryou

As am empowerer, I am often asked how to lose weight, feel better, and/or get in shape. Honestly, the answer is different for everyone. Subsequently, there is no quick fix, magic cure or secret formula. Furthermore, the answer most likely isn’t in what you are doing, rather, it is more likely what you are NOT doing.

Wtf? That doesn’t make any sense, right? Just hang with me here and see where I am going with this.

OVERSCHEDULED

Look at your calendar. Immediately stop what you are doing and look when your next full open hour is.

For many of you, it is late tonight, after the kids are in bed and you have cleaned up the house after a long day. Even more of you may say this weekend after a scheduled event, while others are not open until next Tuesday night at 7:00.

How does looking at your calendar make you feel? Happy? Anxious? Annoyed? Ultimately, the answer to feeling better isn’t to schedule more for others, rather, it is to schedule LESS.  Finally, it is in doing less for others and above all, scheduling more time for you.

5 steps to #BEABETTERYOU

  1. Make yourself a priority. Women have the most difficult time with this one. We are raised to serve others and for that reason, it became the norm to be scheduled every minute of the day. STOP the madness! Repeat after me: you cannot give from an empty cup(read more about this in a previous blog post). Subsequently, if you are constantly doing for others, you will have nothing left in reserves. You have to fill up you in order to help others!
  2. Learn to say NO. Why does telling someone no feel so bad? It isn’t personal, it’s essential. Ultimately, you teach others how to treat yourself and when you can’t learn to say no, and eventually, people will ask you for everything. Sound familiar? Saying no to a few things just means that you will have enough energy and focus for the activities you choose to say yes to.
  3. Sleep. Don’t laugh, I really mean this. Go to bed at the same time every evening and awaken at the same time every day. If you listen to your body, it will tell you how much sleep you need. Your natural circadian rhythms will guide you when you are in tune with them. Hence, sleep deprivation leads to increased stress, increased cortisone levels (think increased belly fat), and increased crankiness and furthermore, none of these situations create a pleasant person. Undeniably, that project will still be there tomorrow morning, and you will certainly have a fresh pair of eyes and a clear mind to see it for what it is.
  4. Increase your water intake. Unfortunately, that coffee doesn’t count as water, nor does that wine. Above all, water is essential to maintain hydration levels, improve digestion and can keep you feeling fuller for longer periods of time. While in contrast, too little water keeps you feeling sluggish and may give you headaches. Ideally, you should aim for ½ of your body weight in ounces per day.
  5. Put yourself on your schedule (in pen). Open your calendar again and schedule time at the gym. Make a nail appointment. Get a massage or try a float at the local Float Center. Get back to nature with Fido for a nice long walk. The fresh air will work wonders on your tired body and soul.

Let it Go

The world will go on without your hand in everything…and people will still like you and ask you to participate in activities. Saying no doesn’t make you less of a servant. It creates a strong foundation for which you can serve.

“In today’s rush, we all think too much – seek too much – and forget about the joy of just being: – Eckhart Tolle

Don’t be an asshole…try compassion

Don’t be an asshole…try compassion

Are you an Asshole?

Wow, that’s a brutal opener, isn’t it? The question stands though, are you an asshole?

An appropriate answer could go something like this: “well, I guess it depends upon who you ask”. And while there may be some truth to that, it’s unfortunate. Human nature has proven again and again that we tend to lash out at those closest to us, at those we love the most.  The social worker in me says that we do this because we feel safe with them and can let our guard down. The wife and mother in me thinks that is a cop out. Shouldn’t we model compassion for all?

Compassion

When engaging with an asshole, the last thing we want to use is compassion. I get it. One riled up person often creates another riled up and pissed off person. Click To TweetHowever, what if you could diffuse the situation? Often times, being aware of our own behavior can assist in de-escalating the increasing anger of others…hence the expression “killing them with kindness”.

However, what happens when compassion doesn’t work?

That’s when we check our boundaries.

Boundaries

This is where it gets tricky. We want to be compassionate without becoming a figurative or literal “punching bag” and that isn’t always an easy thing to do. For many of us, we need to remove said asshole from our life before we realize how toxic the situation truly was. It is only at that time that we can look back and recognize said person for what they are…and thank God that we had the fortitude to remove said person or ourselves from the situation.

As adults, this is difficult to do, therefore, imagine the pressure our children go through. It can be difficult to empower our children to set appropriate boundaries when they witness adults being assholes to one another. This is where it becomes our responsibility to role model both compassion and setting boundaries.

Role Modeling

I have two boys who view the world drastically different. One of my boys doesn’t personalize anythings while one of my sons is very sensitive and tends to personalize the behavior of others, often resulting in relationship issues with his peers. He is compassionate and wants to resolve any conflicts passively. While I commend this approach, it also sets him up to become the product of ridicule from his classmates and we talk about establishing appropriate boundaries. Essentially we have discussed the following:

  • Show compassion, we don’t know what others are experiencing and perhaps he is acting out.
  • Ignore him. Focus on YOU and don’t allow him to have any control over your time at school.
  • Talk to the teacher about the situation.
  • Punch him…while this is not politically correct, if my son has demonstrated the above coping skills and things have yet to change for him, where else can he take this?

My point is this: it is difficult to teach our children how to deal with assholes when they watch everything we are doing. Let’s try a different approach, shall we?  How about we show compassion to others when we want to become angry and lash out. We need to give ourselves time outs to cool off and demonstrate appropriate interactions with others.

After all, when I call it a day, I want to believe in my heart that I wasn’t an asshole…nor did I punch anyone.

Thoughts?

 

Let your voice empower

Let your voice empower

 

What’s in a story?

Everyone has a story to tell, however, too many of us silence the screams before the words are recognized or released. We downplay the significance of our experiences and tend to minimize the emotions as we smother them. We fail to see that our story is what makes us who we are, that each of our chapters is creating a beautiful tale to be shared with others…that perhaps our story will empower and give hope to someone else who is experiencing something similar.

We deny ourselves our voice when we deny our story. When we let the silence separate us from others, we inadvertently create voids rather than implementing building blocks. We create distance from those who could lift us back up. Unfortunately, with each building block, the walls become higher and our ability to reach out to others fades, leaving us feeling alone.

Lift one another up

What if we lifted one another up by releasing that voice and sharing our story? If we derived hope from one another? What if by reading someone’s story we learned how they overcame adversity and conquered their fears?

Wouldn’t that give you hope also? How empowering for the storyteller to know that their experiences are helping someone else while the benefactor gleens a spark of hope.

Hope for a better future. A chance to move forward and tear down those walls, brick by brick and word by word. With each release, a bit of light comes in and with each ray of light, there is a larger bit of hope. This is what we are doing. We are sharing stories and sharing hope.

Empower

Empowerment occurs when we use our voice. We speak up for yourself and we speak for others. Empowerment isn’t just a word, it holds the ability to provide hope for others.  There is a lot of power in that word when you use it wisely.

How will you empower someone today?

Do you have an empowering story to tell?  Send me an email and let’s chat about getting your story out for others to read!

 

What I learned about Keto in 50 days

What I learned about Keto in 50 days

I did something last month.

I drastically changed my way of eating (woe) by cutting carbs and eliminating sugar.

Yes, I went Keto and it isn’t something I did lightly. As with most things I fall in love with, I am initially skeptical. So, I researched, I talked to my practitioner, I connected with some good Keto pals…and I fricken went for it.

Why?  Because I was in pain. I ate too much sugar.  I experienced drastic mood swings. Because I was just plain tired. The final straw was when I jokingly admitted to the people I was training that I dipped my girl scout cookies into my protein shakes. Click To Tweet Yes, it was a joke, but it really happened and it happened often.

I had a problem and I needed an intervention. I already worked out and was developing lean muscle. I was taking my supplements. I still felt like shit.

What I learned in my first 50 days of Keto

  1.  I am an emotional eater.  I  often reached for food when I wasn’t hungry.  It became a habit. It was one of the first things I did upon walking through the door.  Just as I would remove my shoes, I would reach for something sweet.  If I was bored, I would walk into the kitchen and search aimlessly for something that spoke to me. If I awoke in the middle of the night, I would grab a snack; not because I was hungry, but because I was awake and I wanted something to soothe my restless soul.
  2. I was addicted to sugar. Trust me, this is a real thing. I used to joke that I would dip my girl scout cookies into my protein shake…however, the truth is, that wasn’t a joke. I loved the bite-sized Snickers and could rationalize the small size meant fewer calories AND the peanuts were protein. It’s amazing the games we play with our own minds.
  3. I needed the support from others. While I chose to jump into this lifestyle, I truly needed the knowledge and support from others. Not only does that keep you accountable, it creates a reality check. I would reach out to my girlfriend and continuously ask questions and bounce things off of her. I checked into several FB groups often, just to make sure I was on the right track.  I also utilize a pretty cool app called Senza, to track my macros (look, I got the lingo down).
  4. It was easier than I thought it would be. I really don’t miss anything at all.  I still eat pizza, however now I eat the toppings, after all, that’s the good part anyway. I eat pickle and lettuce sandwiches. I eat natural peanut butter and sugar-free chocolate chips. I absolutely admit to being a work in progress, however, I am open to learning, so I guess you CAN teach an old dog new tricks!
  5. I feel AMAZING!  My inflammation is gone. My bloating is gone. I am down 15 pounds and can fit into clothing I haven’t worn for years. My energy level is good and I no longer suffer from carb naps or sugar spikes.

It isn’t for everyone

I am not a clinician. I would not suggest everyone do this. I am a mom who wanted to take control of her life and reign in the poor habits. My favorite daily treat was a smoothie at Juice Stop that I thought was healthy. That smoothie had over 40 carbs in it, therefore I suffered a carb crash every afternoon and had to have something to energize me. The roller coaster was awful and I could not get stabilized.

As I previously mentioned, I did reach out to my clinician and she approved it. She agreed that it would help even out my hormone levels and eliminate my sugar spikes. While I have received some negative feedback from concerned friends, the majority of people have been very supportive. ON a side note, I refuse to call this a diet as that word connotates such negativity in my mind and once I say I am on a diet, I play horrible head games with myself. This is a lifestyle and this is my lifestyle choice.

Some things the helped the transition

My company had recently launched some Keto products. Of course I was skeptical, however, I did try them. (I like to try everything we have so I can guide others on their own journey). Surprisingly I loved the Keto Coffee. It fills me up all morning and gives me incredible energy! With the grass-fed butter, collagen, and MCT Oil already built in, all I have to do is dump it in cold water, froth and enjoy.

Additionally, when you adopt this lifestyle, you will go through the Keto Flu. I now know that you need to increase your electrolytes, which can be done with Himalayan Sea Salt and/or Mio Sport (some people balk at this, however, since this is my blog, this is my opinion).  Drink your electrolytes as it will help tremendously! While you will feel like shit for awhile, this too shall pass and it will be worth it.

Take before and after pics and measure! I didn’t do either, so do what I suggest, not what I did, lol. You will be amazed at how much your body will change. The scale may move quickly initially as your body releases water from your fat cells, however, this too will slow down as you become fat adapted.

As you see your progress, you will become more motivated for success. My husband has supported me on this journey and is slowly adapting to my way of eating. Admittedly, it is a drastic change in thought process, as you have to let go of all the “truths” you have believed for years, but it is so worth it. The bottom line is that I feel more confident, more energetic and happier…and at the end of the day, isn’t that what we all want?

What are your thoughts?  I would love to know what has worked for you and what you need help with!  Email me and let’s chat!

 

Little WELLNESS tweaks for BIG Wellness results!

Little WELLNESS tweaks for BIG Wellness results!

Years of treating my body like shit took its toll. Like most young adults, I thought I was invincible and paid little attention to my overall wellness. I didn’t use sunscreen, I didn’t drink water, and I most assuredly didn’t eat my veggies. I lived on Diet Mountain Dew, Doritos, and beer. Over the years, my weight has vacillated from 115 to 180 (not counting pregnancy). I have been skinny fat and I have been fluffy. Additionally, I had my boys at the advanced maternal ages of 39 and 40, followed by multiple surgeries, including three abdominal adventures. Having been a trainer, I knew what I needed to do, I just didn’t want to do it.

Now that I am nearing a new decade, it is time to focus on ME. It has taken quite some time to get to this point, you know, the one where I make myself a priority! Whether you are a mom or just like to fill your schedule to overflowing, we eat on the fly, we finish our kid’s meals, we stock our kitchen with fast foods. We are too fricken exhausted to work out…even thinking about doing a sit up about makes us want to cry. Our clothes don’t fit, we consider ourselves dressed if we splash on mascara and put on a bra.

Enough. I am worthy of more time than I give myself.

And so are YOU!

Here is what I have learned:

Mindset

Before I could find success, I needed to change my mindset. I had to stop being a martyr and making excuses for why I wasn’t taking the time I needed. Laundry can pile up, dishes will wait, and the kids can deal with mom spending 30 minutes for herself. This was huge. Once I stopped making excuses, I had no reason to NOT go to the gym. I found a gym with daycare and my kids were amazing at the waterworks, however, the staff was incredible and I soon looked forward to these small “me sessions”.

I’ll admit it, I had that same self-confidence issue that many feel when walking into a party. While I had been a trainer in the past, now I was overweight and lacking self-esteem of any kind.

Not every exercise is fit for everyone and I found that I was pushing myself too hard, thus finding myself getting stupid injuries. Those injuries created a sense of failure within me and allowed me to want to quit. The exercises I did in my 20’s may not be the same exercises I should be doing in my 40’s and that’s ok. I had to learn that I was not working out to impress anyone else, I was doing it for me.  It didn’t help that I love to play the “let’s compare” game and compared myself to every other person in the gym.

Practice Grace

I was (and continue to be) very hard on myself. I need to grant myself the same grace I would grant a friend. I need to be realistic as I will skip workouts, I will indulge, I will make poor choices. I don’t do diets because it is an unhealthy head game for me. Once I discover something is restricted, all I want is that which is restricted. I choose to use the word “lifestyle”. I am a work in progress on a healthier lifestyle.

Something else I often tell the people at the gym is this: “you didn’t get out of shape overnight, therefore you will not get back into shape overnight”. People, myself included, want immediate results. That is totally unrealistic and anything that promises you fast results is not healthy for you.

That may sound counter-intuitive as I am an It Works Rep. Thus, I do believe there are tools that will help you on your journey, just as I have found tools to help me on mine. Sometimes we need a little help to boost us where we want to go. After all, when we look better, we feel better and when we feel good, we excrete confidence! For me, the wraps showed me that I could change by changing the appearance of my skin. That was the original impetus for my wanting to change my life and therefore, work on my wellness.

Seek Accountability

I get it, no one wants to ask for help. You are wonder woman and can manage your own fricken health, right? Wrong. Someone else may offer ideas you had not thought of. Having an accountability partner ups the ante and makes this wellness journey real. You may be able to skip a workout with too much guilt, but there is no way you are gonna ditch your workout partner.

Additionally, working out or checking in with someone else makes it easier to try new things. It’s tough to walk into a new fitness facility and try something different, however, it is easier when you have a pal with you. It makes it easier to get adventurous and find new classes to try…and stick with!

What I have learned so far:

To this point in my life, I have learned a few things about this wellness adventure…ready?

  1. Your metabolism will change, however, this is NOT an excuse to sit on the couch and eat all you want. Hormones, thyroid, metabolism, blah blah blah. Yes, they are real, however so are you. stop letting these be excuses for not reaching your goals. I meet people every day who have exceeded their goals regardless of their age.
  2. Change your eating habits. This is an extension of Number one. As your body chemistry changes, your eating habits need to change. After being on a plateau for some time, I finally made the decision to go low sugar/low carb. However, before you make any drastic changes, please consult a practitioner. There is so much information out there and starting on a regimen without medical assistance can be detrimental.
  3. One lifestyle is not for all! Just because your pal lost 20 pounds eating low carb doesn’t mean you will. That friend who gained ten pounds of lean muscle doing cross-fit may be in a totally different fitness level than you are. stop the comparison game and find something that works for YOU!
  4. Make small changes. Don’t change your whole world at once. Make healthier choices when eating out, and keep healthier snacks within your reach.
  5. Set attainable goals. When people tell me they are going to come to the gym and work out five days per week, I tell them no. Set a realistic goal and celebrate the victories. Self-sabotage comes from changing too many things at one in addition to setting unrealistic goals.
  6. Be patient. Lifestyle changes take work and will involve some successes and some setbacks. That’s ok. Pick yourself up, get back on course and move forward.
  7. Love yourself. You are more than your appearance. You are a living and breathing human who deserves to be healthy and look their best. Fitness looks different for everyone. I know people who are technically overweight who could kick all of our assess in a circuit and I know people who look fit and get breathless walking up a flight of stairs.

The bottom line is that you need to want to change more than you want to stay the same. My motivation was having children at an older age. I didn’t want to be mistaken for their grandmother, nor did I want to sit on the sideline while they played…I wanted to be right in there with them. So, find your way and get out of your own way. Not only will you feel better, you will be an example to those around you.

 

 

 

 

 

What’s YOUR Holiday Trifecta?

What’s YOUR Holiday Trifecta?

Greens

Fat Fighters to the Rescue!

Confianza!

Holiday Happenings!

It’s HERE!  The most magical time of the year!  We gather together to eat, drink and be festive!  I would imagine that is why January 1st is the most popular day for Wellness resolutions because people feel absolutely physically ill after nearly 8 weeks on indulging to the point of combustion.

Between the stress, pace, and unplanned goodies, our bodies undergo a major transformation during November and December.  That transformation isn’t usually one we are proud to show off.  Look at the statistics, more people are sick, as our schedules become busier, we fail to work out, and extended family visits mean dining outside of our regular norm.

Have a plan this year to stay ahead of the insanity…How?

Your Holiday Trifecta!

What in the grinches cold heart is a holiday trifecta and why would you want to have it?  Because within these three supplements, you have everything you need to stay sane, healthy, and on track.  Research has shown that those who have a plan are more likely to stick to it.  When we just wing it, we tend to put ourselves in a situation where we overindulge, over schedule and overstay.

I carry these three with me everywhere I go.  I also have more at home for when I run out.  Why?  Because for less than $100, I have a plant-based plan for bio-available supplements that I know have no artificial fillers.  I anticipate that I will be busier these next two months.  I know I will be bombarded with baked goods and yummy treats, and I guarantee the cocktails will be readily available for partaking in.

Greens on the Go

These little gems provide the following in every packet:

  • Daily detox – excessive alcohol can wreak havoc on your body
  • Alkalize your system – disease can’t thrive in an alkalized system
  • 8 servings of fruits and vegetables – when your nutrition is less than par, you are more likely to become ill
  • 52 Superfoods – extra nutrition to fight off illness and reduce cravings
  • Natural energy – Green tea extract provides a boost in your energy level to keep you going.

Advanced Formula Fat Fighters

Just two little pills taken 15 – 60 minutes following your heaviest meal, caloric indulgence or alcoholic splurge does the following:

  • Helps to block a large portion of carbs
  • Blocks nearly 18 grams of fat
  • Helps to balance blood glucose levels
  • Assists in controling cravings
  • Works in the stomach, not intestines (white pants approved)

Confianza

Let’s face it, the holidays are stressful.  When it is too early for wine and you feel your stress level rising, simply take one of two of our capsules for the following:

  • Natural stress reducer for your mind and body
  • Provides energy
  • Combats fatigue
  • Increases mental clarity
  • Improves concentration
  • Assists in improving body balance

Let me help you this season

Please, I implore you. Do not wait until January to start worrying about you or your wellness.  Let me help you defend against illness, stress, and fatigue.  Eating crappy increases your fatigue and weight gain while decreasing your ability to ward off illness.  Let’s start today and you will be bringing in 2018 happier and healthier than you have begun other New Years!