Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Enjoying the Halloween Candy! Should I or Shouldn't I??

With Halloween almost here I thought it would be appropriate to discuss the topic of enjoying those candy treats. It's Halloween, so on this particular holiday I don't feel like you are missing out on anything if you don't indulge in the sugar overload. Now, if you are going to a party, taking your kids trick or treating, or going to a harvest fest, I say have a great time and that can include eating some "treats." The real issue is not the candy itself, but how you think about it and how it will effect you.

If you can enjoy a few pieces of candy without having discussions in your head about the said candy - then you can choose to eat it, enjoy it and that will be that!

But if you are already thinking about Halloween, and all that candy, and if you are going to eat it, or how badly you are afraid you will binge on it -- then maybe it would be a good idea to exercise some self control and abstain from the candy all together this year. If your mindset is not in a good place then eating the candy will only cause you harm, not just physically, but mentally and emotionally. If eating the candy will cause you to feel guilty, out of control, like a failure because you don't feel you are in control,, etc. -- if that is where you are now, then acknowledge that. If that is where you are, please don't feel guilty, it's simply where you are and that means this is an area you need to grow in.

I have been there, where I couldn't help myself in front of a plate of cookies! It's not a fun place to be! No inanimate object should have any power over us, right? It takes time, properly nourishing your body regularly, some re-wiring of your brain and changing how you associate with food.

So this Halloween, if you choose to indulge in those treats, please don't let it be a self-destructive behavior. And if you know it will be, then acknowledge that and choose what will serve you better.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Excerpt from my book, Fit Mind, Body and Spirit

                                          A happy heart is good medicine and a cheerful mind works healing,  
                                                          but a broken spirit dries up the bones.                                                                                                      Proverbs 17:22
            The first step to making any changes in your life is awareness. This can be the most difficult step because it means you need to be completely honest with yourself. Every client I have worked with, each person I encounter on their fitness journey and myself included are all working to improve not just what we look like, but how we feel and who we are inside and out. It’s not about trying to become some image of who we think we are supposed to be. It’s about becoming aware of what’s going on within our minds, bodies and spirits so we can let go of the negative things that are damaging us, and grow more each day into the person God has designed us to be.
We can’t have a healthy body with a mind that is infected with self-destructive, negative, worldly thinking. And we can’t have a perfectly healthy mind and body with a non-existent relationship with God. These things are impossibilities. One without the others will never be complete or lasting. You may be able to reach some weight loss or fitness goal but if nothing else changes you will still feel the same now as you do then, maybe even worse. Working towards bringing all these areas into balance is what we need to do.
Will we ever get it perfect? On this side of Heaven, of course not! Does that mean we shouldn’t even try? Of course not! Our health is a major factor in how we experience life, and how we impact those around us. What you think about who God is and who you are will drive how you think and behave.
Draw near to God and He will transform your mind, and as your thinking changes, your behaviors will change. When you begin to see yourself as His beautiful creation, it becomes easier and easier to live a healthy lifestyle.


Spiritual Awareness Questions 

1.      Who do you think God is?
2.      According to you, who are you?
3.      Who does God say you are?
4.      What has God promised you?
5.      What miracles has He worked in your life?

Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul. 3 John 1-2

Sunday, August 17, 2014

The Un-Battle of the Buldge - Let's Stop Fighting and Start Loving!

Do you feel like you have been fighting in the weight loss (or any other issue for that matter) battle forever? Do you feel like it has been you vs. yourself (the parts of you, you want to change) and you just can't seem to win? Are you able to muster-up some motivation and get on track, only to fall back into your unhealthy habits after a brief amount of time? If you can relate to that - then I know you must be deep down tired. You have been fighting and losing far too long, and it's time to lay it down and enjoy some peace!

First step is awareness -- you've been had. The devil wants to keep us distracted and spinning in circles. Think about it, how much more time and energy you would have (mentally, emotionally, spiritually and physically) - if you stopped fighting with yourself? What if instead you were able to take all that energy and focus it on living a healthy positive life? How would you impact your children, your spouse, your friends and family if they saw you taking great care of yourself out of self-love, and not forcing yourself to stick to some diet and training regiment because you hate your body.

Now let's talk about self-love. I don't know about you, but I have spent a large portion of my life hating parts of myself. From my pre-teen years through adulthood I have struggled with depression, anxiety and PTSD in varying degrees. I have always been a positive, optimistic person - which I know is one of my God-given characteristics that has kept me going. However, up until the past couple years, I had been hating parts of myself, those places where it was dark, sad, foggy, unable to focus or cope, numb, hard to get through the day, out of balance or out of control. I felt so guilty because I knew that God created me for a great purpose and gave me all these talents and gifts, and yet there I was sinking in the mud.

The birth of my first son, Bear was the beginnings of God calling me back to Him. God showed me an awesome glimpse of His love for me and you through Bear. As most of you know, Bear as Arthrogryposis and we did not know this until he was born. Bear was born naturally at home with a midwife and when he came out, he did not breathe - not exactly the beautiful natural birth I had pictured. I have never been so calm and completely terrified in my entire life. Thank God the paramedics arrived 3 minutes later, they were able to get him breathing and off to the NICU we went.

I had just experienced a traumatic birth and there was my tiny little baby with crooked limbs - and I experienced for the first time the unconditional love a mother has for her child. It didn't matter that he wasn't "typical", it didn't matter that we had some big challenges and unknowns ahead, it didn't matter that he looked different. My love for him was and is unconditional - and if he has been born "normal" I couldn't possibly love him more.

God showed me that this is how He loves me and you! Life can be traumatic, and sometimes we come out a bit crooked -  Even in our darkest days when we feel we have messed up our lives beyond recognition and have become someone we don't want to be - God loves us just as much at our lowest points as he does when we are doing well. He doesn't just love our good parts, he loves ALL our parts! He hates sin, He doesn't hate us - and it's through our imperfections that He is perfected and glorified!

So if God can love all of our parts, we need to learn how to love ourselves completely. Our works will never earn more of His love, so let's stop telling ourselves that we will be happier, more complete or better when we achieve temporary things like a certain physique or status.

An amazing thing happens when you begin to love all of yourself - even the parts you are not proud of --- you begin to feel and accept you are worthy of all the great things God has made you to do. You begin to feel that it is really ok to let go of bad habits and pursue excellence. You no longer need to fight with yourself. You lay it all down at Jesus's feet, walk away and let the Holy Spirit empower you, direct you and grow you into the person you know deep down you were meant to be.

 And look at Bear now :)
You can do this!

God is always right there with you
And He will carry you when you can't do it yourself!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

What does it mean to be healthy and fit?

Recently my family and I went hiking on Mt. Rainer. It was awesome! What a great day! I actually did my Insanity workout in the morning before we left and hiked a good hour with my 20lb baby Kai strapped to me in my baby carrier. I was pleasantly surprised at how easily I could do this hike while wearing Kai. Pregnancy took its toll on me and I have taken my time to strengthen my body inside and out.

All tuckered out

This day really showed me what health and fitness is all about. It is easy to get focused on your physique or weight loss goals - and forget why you want to be fit in the first place. I have grown a lot in the past few years and while I am planning on competing next year, my focus is not solely on getting ripped for the sake of looking a certain way.

In the past I achieved a lean, toned physique, but I had no energy and did not feel good for a lot of it. Looking back I see where I needed to allow my body more time to recover from pregnancy, where I over-dieted and over-trained and under-rested. This time around I am on a mission to improve my health, fitness and body composition - and feel good while I'm doing it!

This has got me thinking, what does it mean to be healthy and fit?

Being Healthy and Fit Means Saying, "Yes" to

Nourishing your body with healthy foods the majority of the time, while occasionally enjoying "other" foods
Exercising your body to improve your strength, conditioning and endurance, so you can go have an adventure!
Taking your kids to the park or other outing because you actually have the energy to enjoy it!
Resting instead of pushing harder and over doing it -- Take a 20 minute soak in a lavender, coconut oil and epsom salt bath (my ND actually prescribed this to me! :)
Spending quality time with friends and family, away from technology, no smart phones, actually being present with those you love.
Taking time to be quiet with God, read His word, and let it nourish your soul!

Monday, August 4, 2014

What Real Weight Loss Looks Like - Insanity 3 weeks down, 6 weeks to go!

After a lot of consideration, I decided to be a Beachbody Coach.I started off in the Fitness Industry back in 2007 after I got in shape with the help of a personal trainer and nutritionist. My life was forever changed for the better and I knew this was my life's mission, to helps others do the same! I got my personal training certification and worked for a few years off and on (in between moving cross country a few times, having babies, etc...) I really enjoyed working as a trainer, but at this point I want to work at home so I can spend more time with my boys. So that is what I am doing, and Beachbody allows me to still help people get fit while working from home:)

I started Insanity on July 14th. I wasn't sure how I would like working out at home. I love going to the gym, but at this point, it is too much of a hassle and takes up too much time out of my day. Now I workout while Kai takes his morning nap and Bear works out with me! It has been great for both of us. I am very impressed with the program and it's so great that Bear can do it with me.

As many of you know, Bear has Arthrogryposis, so he has limited strength and range of motion in his upper extremities. He also has ADHD and Sensory Processing Disorder so he needs lots of proprioceptive input (think running, jumping, etc) to help him feel balanced and in control. He literally NEEDS to be able to bounce off the walls! haha
Anyway, it has been very cool to see him jumping and running around doing his "workout" with me! He can't do all the movements like in the DVD, but he does his best or just runs around like a typical 5  year old boy. He will look at the screen and say, "Ohh, I can do that one!!" and he is so proud of himself. So it's great for him and great for me -- Win Win!

So you may be wondering how I'm doing with it. Well I have lost 6lbs so far, my body is getting stronger and tighter, and my cardiovascular conditioning has improved!

I have been weighing myself daily, which is something I don't normally do or recommend. I wanted to show you all what real weight loss looks like. The starred days are my higher calorie days. I have had to do some tweaking with my diet already to keep my body in balance. As you can see my weight has gone down and up and down but ultimately it has consistently gone down. So don't worry about slight fluctuations in your weight, sometimes even if you are eating the same exact thing everyday, your weight could go up because you didn't get enough sleep! It doesn't mean your diet isn't working, it's just how it goes.

Here's my Before and After so far. Not very dramatic, just realistic! After having Kai, months of nursing, eating healthy and easing back into working out, I still was left with some weight to lose. For me, when I get to this point, I need to be more strict with my diet. And there is no magic pill or formula, a healthy balanced mealplan with a reasonable caloric deficit and exercise is all you need!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Survival Tips for the Days of Sleep Deprivation - and a Simple Crock Pot Recipe!

My poor little Kai is sick :( He is miserable and I have been up with him a lot these past few nights. Yesterday I woke up to him at 5:30am, after being up with him at 4am, 1:30am, midnight, etc. Needless to say I was bleary eyed and knew that I had a long day ahead of me taking care of my boys! Here's some tips to help survive those days of sleep deprivation:

Take care of yourself!  Eat good stuff!
Sleep deprivation is really hard on your body, especially your adrenal glands. Guess what else is really hard on your adrenal glands? A poor diet that includes spiking your blood sugar too high, as well as too much caffeine. On these days it is so easy to think you need that sugar and caffeine fix, but you will do better to avoid this. A cup or 2 of coffee is fine, just not the whole pot :)
My ND prescribed me some supplements to support my adrenals that have helped me so much! I am writing a whole blog on this topic - it is so important!

Do as much as you can earlier in the day and try to get an afternoon nap if you can.
Workout in the morning! It will help get your energy up and you will feel better. Workout smarter, not harder, don't kill yourself. Do any chores, take the kids to the park, any errands you need to do - Don't wait until the afternoon if you can help it. You know that by noon you will start to crash and by 3pm it will feel like 3am! So do your best to prepare for this. Get dinner in the crock pot after breakfast, so you won't have to worry about it later.

                                      Here's my crock pot dinner I threw together yesterday.
Rainbow Carrots and Onions

Grass Fed Chuck Roast

Seared in Olive Oil, then put in crock pot.

I did not have any broth so I used Water with a few tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar and Salt. This vinegar acts as a meat tenderizer. Broth or Stock would have been better, but this was tasty too. I also added some Garlic Powder
                                                           Cook on Low for 8 Hours

 I just steamed some green beans real quick and Dinner was served!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

So what does healthy eating look like? One day on my mealplan

I am currently dieting and exercising to lose the rest of the baby weight from my last pregnancy. I have had some issues keeping my milk supply up so I am currently working with a clinical nutritionist to help me fuel my body and get the results I am looking for. I started my mealplan last week and we had to increase my protein and carbs because while my weight did drop, so did my milk supply. Now with the increases I have been able to keep my supply up, do my Insanity and my weight is dropping - oh yeah and I feel pretty great too :)

Anyway, I thought it may be helpful for some of you to actually see what a mealplan looks like. I have many options on my plan, so it doesn't always look exactly like this.

It's pretty simple - healthy balanced eating has amazing benefits. It doesn't need to be a big mystery. You may need to play around with how much your body actually needs, so you start somewhere, and go from there!
Breakfast: Steel Cut Oats, Whey Protein, AlmondsCoffee w/ Almond Milk


Greek Yogurt and Granola
Ground Turkey, Rice, Asparagus, Dry Roasted Mixed Nuts
Baby Carrots and Almond Butter

Chicken Breast, Rice, Asparagus, Dry Roasted Mixed Nuts