You verse You

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You verse You

A few weeks ago, prior to the 2017 Crossfit Games, we watched several different athlete training videos and I can't remember who said it, but one of the female competitors said - it's YOU vs. YOU and that hit me hard.  I have been stuck in the health, wellness, fitness comparison game and it's so easy to get sucked into this black hole.  

When I heard, YOU vs. YOU, it made perfect sense.  The only person I need to compete against is me.  To be the best version of myself today and not worry about how green the grass is for someone else.  So, I went through my social media and unfollowed so many accounts that I felt I needed to keep up with, I unsubscribed from Youtube channels, ditched Keto and went back to Paleo / Primal which works best for me and my body. 

I made the commitment to start to train for me in a way that I enjoy rather than dread.  I wanted to eat in a way that fuels my body rather than causes inflammation and pain.  So, from now until the big 36 in February, I am putting my focus on me.  Selfish - damn right!  

For the next several months, I'll be sharing the journey with weekly updates to include my training, meals, and thoughts. 

Week One: 

Monday: Workout: Lower Body & Back Circuit (4 rounds)

Circuit One: 

  • Elevated back squat with barbell 45# 10 - 12 reps 
  • Seated Lat Pulldown 60# 10 - 12 reps
  • Single leg pistol squats 10 on each leg 

Circuit Two: 

  • Seated Row 45# 10-12 reps 
  • Walking Lunges 10 reps
  • Elevated heel narrow squats 20reps

Tuesday: Post leg day pain!  AB's and Assault Bike

Wednesday: Rest Day

Thursday: Shoulder / Glute & Hamstring Circuit (4 rounds)

  • Dumbbell shoulder press 10# 10-12 reps
  • Lying leg curl with resistance band - 12 reps
  • DB Poliquin Lat Raise 5# 10-12 reps
  • Seated Bent Over DB Lat Raise 5# 6-8 reps
  • Standing Good Morning wide stance - 10-12 rep
  • DB Standing Front Raise 5# 10-12 reps
  • KB Bent-Knee Deadlift 10-12 reps

Macros: 1700 calories | 150g Carbs | 128g Protein | 67g Fat 

Meals have been rather basic and standard paleo - eggs & bacon for breakfast, banana and apple for fruit, cauliflower rice stir fry with ground turkey, romaine salad with Caesar (non-paleo) and cherry tomatoes, beef burgers, and red skin potatoes.

I've been drinking a non-paleo pre-made shake to simply get in more protein since I didn't realize how low I was one consuming protein until I began tracking my macros.  On Monday, when my hunger kicked into hangry and I was at the studio - I did eat a non-paleo granola style bar just to keep myself from going to hangry and crazy!

 

 

 

 

 

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Brand new beginnings

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Brand new beginnings

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On Monday, I was handed the keys to my very first brick & mortar studio space which has been a dream of mine for years.  Stepping into this space sparks so much creativity for me and I feel incredibly at home.  Plus, I can finally return to my morning routine of working out before kicking off my work day. 

Since I've been out of commission for most of the summer, I am easing back into my workouts.  I'll be striving for 4 workouts per week as a minimum for the first month. 

My split:

  • Day 1: Back & Quad - Two 4 exercise circuits of four rounds each
  • Day 2: Shoulders & Glute/Hamstring - Two 4 exercise circuits of four rounds each
  • Day 3: Arm: Two 4 exercise circuits of four rounds each.
  • Day 4: Full Body - HIIT/Crossfit style workout

I'll be adding some sort of cardio to each of the three training days and mixing between rowing / spin / assault bike for 20 to 30 minutes.

My meal plan:

A whole food / paleo based meal plan around 1700 calories

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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September Reset

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I've been a little MIA from the coaching part of my life and for a few reasons (some good, some bad)

Let's start with the good.  One of the biggest reasons I've neglected my coaching blog is because I've been busy with the studio construction, designing marketing materials, connecting with models, and planning all of the tiny details (decor, paint colors, products to order), etc. If you aren't sure of what I am referring to with a new studio ----> you can read all about it here

 

As for the bad.  I had a few unexpected health things pop up in July and August which really sidelined in me in terms of how I was feeling and moving my body. It started in July when I picked up an ameba in my eye from paddleboarding - it was scary to learn how quickly, if untreated, your eye sight could deteriorate or be lost completely.  Thankfully, I bounced back and became an advocate of daily contact lens for paddleboarding! 

Following the eye was a tension in my neck causing nasty throbbing headaches, a popping ear, jaw and shoulder pain.  After a week or so of icing, adjustments, and slathering essential oils all over my neck and ear, I felt a lot better.  Because of the jaw pain and a chip in my front tooth, I had to make a dentist appointment. 

All of this led me to review my less than stellar summer diet.  I'll be fully transparent - Monday - Friday (lunch), I ate really well and in alignment with how I desired to feel, but come the weekends, I treated my body like a garbage can.  My joints were achy, I didn't want to workout, and my stomach was wrecked.  After some soul searching and a major heart to heart with myself, I knew I needed to return to my paleo ways in order to reduce the inflammation and pain in my body. 

When I say, I ate bad - I truly mean ate horribly!  Greasy, fried foods, tons of dairy, a lot of grains and very little color on my plate.  I knew with each bite I was making a horrible decision, but for some reason, I didn't care.  

Fast forward to September 1st, enough is enough!  We made a household decision to get back on track!  I even decided to start training for a 5k.  Even though I made the mental decision to clean up my diet and actually eat in accordance to how I desired to feel, my body needed more time to recover and as I type this... I am still recovering with a bit of a cold, and a groin strain - which for a female is really difficult to do, but when you stop working out and decide to skip a proper warm up and start running on a treadmill this is what you get.  

I've taken a major step back this month and plan to ease into workouts next week provided I am feeling better.  This has been an incredible learning lesson for me to understand what my body is telling me.  If you are experiencing a similar series of health challenges, I suggest that you take a step back to see how they might be connected and evaluate how it might be connected. 

Moving forward, I don't have a plan for my fitness for the first time in about three years.  My hope once the studio construction and decorating comes to an end that my workouts will resume to about 3 or 4 days a week. Until then, I am taking it one step and bite at a time. 

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20 Habits To Help Ditch The Diet Forever

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20 Habits To Help Ditch The Diet Forever

YOUR DAILY INSPIRATION FOR DETOX & WEIGHT LOSS

20 Habits To Help Ditch The Diet Forever

 

  1. HONOR yourself.
  2. Aspire to be truly good to yourself at every opportunity.
  3. Follow your program to reduce stress. Reduction of stress results in a release of toxins and loss of weight.
  4. Eat simply.
  5. Get enough rest.
  6. Take time for yourself.
  7. Ask for support from your friends & family.
  8. Drink 80 ounces of lemon water a day.
  9. Eat foods that are free of hormones. Hormones can interfere with your metabolism.
  10. Listen to your body and make sure you are nourishing it with healthy foods.
  11. Practice proper portion control.
  12. Get your heart pumping, remembering that exercise provides not only physical results but also greatly improves your mental state.
  13. Ditch all the processed foods.
  14. Choose to be positive.
  15. Eat foods that promote healing & health.
  16. Create a book of pictures that inspire you and refer to it when you need.
  17. Say your daily affirmations.
  18. At least once a day, dance.
  19. At least once a day, hug yourself.
  20. Practice feeling calm while knowing we are not perfect.

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WHEN CRAVINGS ATTACK

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WHEN CRAVINGS ATTACK

Cravings happen even to the healthiest of us. Often, when a craving hits in the afternoon or the evening after dinner, we get the urge to snack. Snacking can be a bad habit to get into because the snacks we choose are often junky, un-nutritious, and high in calories, sugar, or fat.

The trick to snacking without piling on the pounds is to find healthy alternatives to the regular snacks you might normally reach for.

Usually, when we get a craving it is for either something sweet (chocolate!), savory (potato chips!), creamy (ice cream!), or crunchy (crisps!). Obviously, my examples are foods you shouldn’t eat all the time if you want to be trim and healthy. But that doesn’t mean you have to fight your cravings for the rest of your life. Instead, you just need to substitute.

Next time you get a craving for something sweet, why not try:

  • fresh, whole fruit

  • apples and almond butter

  • dried fruit

  • green smoothies

  • banana “ice cream” (peel a banana, freeze, blend in a food processor with nuts, berries or  raisins, and serve)

  • dates stuffed with almond butter or other nut butter

  • organic dark chocolate chips or carob chips

For your savory cravings, try these healthy alternatives:

  • olives

  • pickles and pickled vegetables, such as carrot, daikon, beets, and lotus root

  • tabouli, hummus

  • steamed vegetables with tamari/shoyu or umeboshi vinegar

  • freshly made salsa or guacamole

  • Sauerkraut (will also knock your sweet craving right out!)

  • salted edamame

Your creamy cravings can be met by eating:

  • smoothies

  • avocados

  • rice pudding

  • dips and spreads, like hummus and baba ghanoush

  • puréed soups

  • puddings made with silken tofu, avocado, or mashed banana

  • mashed sweet potatoes

  • coconut milk

Finally, don‘t cave and reach for the Pringles, when you can eat these crunchy (but still healthy) snacks:

  • apples

  • frozen grapes

  • rice cakes

  • light popcorn or plain popcorn (use coconut oil to pop in a covered pan)

  • carrots (particularly the sweet, organic baby carrots)

  • celery and nut butter

  • raw, unsalted nuts like cashews, almonds, and walnuts

 

Don’t fight your craving. Instead, listen to what it is your body wants specifically and choose the healthier option that will be good to your waistline.

 

 

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It's on your plate because you put it there!

I shared this post in a group for health coaches that I help mentor and have been sharing it like wildfire because I believe it's that important! 

 

I know, I know... I am a broken record for saying... plan out your week, but in all seriousness it's important.

This morning over breakfast I sat down with my planner to look at September - December which is hands-down the busiest months for everyone!


Back to school, Thanksgiving, the Holiday season, and the countdown to the New Year. Not to mention football season is starting up again.

Take a chunk of time today to open up your planner, google calendar or whatever method it is that you use and start put dates on the calendar.

HOUSEHOLD DATES TO GET ON THE CALENDAR


+Sports / activity practices for your kids
+Football watching parties
+School events (back to school night, homecoming, SAT weekends, etc) 
+ Picture Day at school
+Doctor appointments
+Holiday travel plans
+Days off of school

BUSINESS DATES TO GET ON THE CALENDAR
+ Program launch dates
+ Cart open dates
+ Cart close dates
+ Program start dates
+ Program end dates
+ Weekly newsletters
+ Networking events to attend
+ Webinar dates to host / attend
+ Times you have open for coaching calls
+ Block out time for content development
+ State of YOUR Business Meetings
+ Photo shoot days for recipes, products, etc
+ Social Media planning
+ Order deadlines if you need materials for an upcoming vendor show or event
+ Vendor Shows

 

A page from Danielle Laporte's Fire Starter Sessions book 

A page from Danielle Laporte's Fire Starter Sessions book 

Did this give me anxiety to think that summer is rapidly coming to an end along with the final months of 2017 - you bet, but I also feel organized and ready to take on the final months of the year.

Another tip: Schedule in your self care / personal development and workouts! Make this a priority because if you don't your end up burning yourself out by trying to serve everyone else!

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7 MISTAKES I MADE DURING MY WELLNESS JOURNEY

Boy, do I wish I could go back in time and not waste as much time and energy I did when I first attempted my journey of health and wellness improvement. Below are the biggest mistakes I've made along the way and how to avoid making them yourself. Some are common sense, but when you feel like you're at the bottom of a huge mountain it can feel easier to throw money at the problem for a quick fix. 

 

MISTAKE #1:  Throwing money at quick fixes. 

I can't even begin to tell you how many thousands of dollars I spent on shakes and pills that didn't work.  I've literally tried every program on the planet and none of them provided me with the "claimed" results - the only thing I had to show was a depleted bank account. 

Rather than buying into quick fix products, I needed to understand why I was making the poor food choices I was, along with understanding why I couldn't get off my tush and workout.  Until I had a clear understanding as to WHY I was creating these habits, nothing would change no matter the product. 

 

PRO TIP: Stop spending money on shitty products that don't provide results. Oh and don't even think about calling me a hater because the products didn't work...let's be real for a minute: investing in a program that is attached to a subscription based product more than likely means that you will yo-yo right off the moment you cancel your order!   #boom! 

 

MISTAKE #2: Waiting until rock bottom before seeking help. 

Some might argue that you need to hit rock bottom in order to muster up enough courage to seek help. Get over yourself, stop being stubborn and reach out for help.  The truth is... if you aren't having success than something isn't working.  End your self-sabotage/yo-yo lifestyle once and for all! Which leads to point #3

 

MISTAKE #3: Get legit support! 

I'm blown away by the amount of health advice that is provided from those who have little to no knowledge behind being a coach or providing nutritional support.  I've seen this with several MLM business models where their product advocates are called "coaches" when many don't have a certification or education within the health and wellness realm to be calling themselves a coach. 

On a personal note: I shelled out a lot of cash for a custom program (provided by a well-known local trainer) only to request that the program not include grains (it did!) and when I reached out for support, the "trainer" was MIA failing to return calls or texts.

Find a coach that is willing to work with you over the phone, in-person, skype, via email and text.  This is an incredibly vulnerable time in your life and having someone who has been in your shoes and understands your struggle will help you far more than the jacked and ripped Instagram celebrity that just wants "fans".

 

MISTAKE #4: Not lifting weights soon enough. 

I am going to call out my momma on this one. She embedded into my brain during my teen/high school years that lifting weight would make me bulky.  Sorry momma, that just ain't the case.  I wish I would have explored lifting at a much earlier age and/or at the start of my journey rather than being a cardio junkie. Now, I would rather do burpees than cardio!  

 

MISTAKE #5: Not sticking to what is working for YOU. 

Once you begin to see success (weight loss, muscle definition, looser fitting clothes, etc), it's easy to take your foot off the gas and revert back to your old ways.  In the past year, I've bounced around from diet to diet - counting macros, dabbling with keto, and even following the crappy diet from Mistake #2. For the three years prior I knew that Paleo worked for me, my lifestyle and my body - yet, I was looking for the next best thing - hey, I'm human and look for the easy button too from time to time. 

 

MISTAKE #6: A sub category of #5

Don't become fixated on what anyone else is doing.  It's super easy to get sucked the latest fad diet or workout craze.  I fell into this trap by following an excessive amount of fitness people on youtube - hence leading down the road of counting macros and adding confusion to my life.

Unhealthy comparison began to consume me.  Rather than focus on how far I'd come and celebrate my progress, I was was comparing myself to their highlight reel.   I neglected to add that I run two businesses, have a husband, family, and dogs to juggle daily where many of these youtuber's have made their life youtube.  Right or wrong - it doesn't matter - as long as you are sticking with what works for you and aren't comparing yourself to anyone else. 

 

MISTAKE #7: Giving a damn about what someone else has to say about YOUr diet and lifestyle.

When we (P and I) decided to transition to paleo we took a lot of shit from our family and friends!  At first I let it bother me, but the results (physical, emotional, mental) couldn't be argued. I no longer give a damn if someone is unhappy that I brought my own food or declined plans because my workout or meal prep came first.  Oh and when we take a new recipe to share... we rarely come home with leftovers, so my shit isn't weird after all! 

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WHY i partnered with a wellness company

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WHY i partnered with a wellness company

This post might seem like it will contradict my beliefs about shakes, pill, and potions (read that post here) but stay with me.  As a coach, I am approached almost daily with a new company or product to align myself with.  I've plunked down serious cash with trial and error of products with little success until a client/friend from the gym introduced me to Melaleuca The Wellness Company that I fell head over heels for even after I told myself and her that I didn't want to join yet another company.

Here's the difference - I wanted to cut big box shopping out of my life, eliminate toxins from our home, and have one source for my vitamins and protein shakes and bars.  Let me be clear, I CONSUME PROTEIN SHAKES, but as a means to supplement and support an already clean diet.

By joining Melaleuca I have been able to remove trips to the big box stores from my life along with my overspending on bulk products that I don't need and removed temptation from purchasing "demo" items.

Instead, I can sit in my PJ's, sip on coffee and create my monthly order. Some months our order is only for vitamins and other months we are stocking up on protein powders, cleaning products and vitamins.  We can be flexible with our orders without sacrificing quality!  

If you are interested in transitioning your household from toxic chemical based cleaning products and want to incorporate a new line of supplements into your wellness regime shoot me an email (amandakraftwellness@gmail.com) and we chat about how to get you started! 

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Do shakes, pills, and potions really work?

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Do shakes, pills, and potions really work?

HELL NO! 

Sorry, not sorry! 

I am sure there are plenty of coaches and trainers who won't agree with my strong viewpoint, but I am sticking by it.  Hitching your weight loss wagon to a shake, pill or potion might give you the quick fix you've been looking for, but it's likely that over time you'll grow old of the product or the product will fall to the wayside leaving you high and dry.  

How many fads have you gotten involved with, only fizzle within a year or two after it became popular? 

As a former quick fix shake-making, pill popping, potion brewer I sought out every option available to me.  I SPENT thousands - YES! THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS attempting to "quick fix" my weight loss only to discover hard work and commitment would be all I needed for lasting success.  

So before you submit payment for a 30-day supply of shakes or pills ask yourself -

WHY?

WHY are you throwing your money into a quick fix product when you know the real path is putting in the effort in the kitchen, with your workouts, and personal development?

Wanna know WHY you are still going to buy the quick fix?  It's because you don't want to do the work.  We all want the easy button.  Truth is, I've never read a weight loss success story that didn't involve blood, sweat, and plenty of tears.  In fact, that's what the best stories are made of. Not a product that is filled with sub par ingredients or hyped by already in-shape celebrity promoter.  

Even the contestants on popular weight loss reality shows have regained their lost weight and then some... why because the plan wasn't realistic to begin with - in fact nothing about the show was.  The proof is in my chia seed pudding that if you want lasting weight loss and wellness success you better get crystal clear on what it is you desire and plan for a bumpy ride. 

Harsh - I know... as much as I want to be all zen and meditative, I gotta call it like I see it. Lasting success happens with commitment and dedication to the plan; a plan that works for you based on your bio-individuality.  Within a few weeks of whatever plan it is you choose the honeymoon stage will dry up, you'll be tempted at every turn to give up and your WHY for transforming your life will be what drives you. 

So, if shakes, pills, and potions aren't the answer what is?  

The answers can be found by learning how to fuel and nourish your body using bio-individuality along with a bit of trial and error. Following a plan involves becoming radically realistic with yourself as to what your goals truly are, how much time you can dedicate to preparing your food, setting aside time for workouts, getting enough sleep and being willing to take action every day toward your desired outcome. 

Rather than turn to a quick fix (which we know won't work forever) you'll need to strip apart what it is you are doing currently and assess if the food you are eating and movement you are participating in will help in reaching your goals or put you on a path for sabotage.  

You can eat all of the chicken, broccoli, and rice you want along with bragging about the 100 burpees you do a day won't mean sh*t if you have a poor mindset and aren't willing to get your hands dirty and do the work.  

Next time you get ready to hit buy on a bag of shakes, bottle of pills or mix a weight loss potion think twice and ask yourself... if you've gone down this road before and haven't gotten you desired results... than maybe it's time for a new approach....just sayin'!

 

 

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6 Reasons WHY Working out in the morning is better than hitting the snooze button

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6 Reasons WHY Working out in the morning is better than hitting the snooze button

We are fully aware of the benefits to moving our bodies on a daily basics so I won't drill that point home too much.  It's understood that moving your body can help reduce stress, get your endorphins pumping and aid in weight loss.  Those things we can all agree on.  Now, it comes down to actually to taking action and making each workout a reality. 

We are all busy- it's the fact of life and sadly the reality of being an adult. But, "BEING BUSY" isn't a free pass for skipping out on the importance of making our health & wellness a priority.  And while I hate the quote that someone busier than you is working out as it feels cocky, it's true!

If you can't decide between a morning or afternoon workout - then don't!  Review your schedule to determine what works best for you.Personally, I've had greater success sticking to a morning workout routine than trying to get to the gym in the afternoon, if you still aren't convienced that working out in the morning is better than hitting the snooze button than scroll down. 

HERE ARE 6 REASONS WHY WORKING OUT IN THE MORNING IS BETTER THAN HITTING THE SNOOZE BUTTON

1 - Your body isn't mentally or physically drained from a long day of work and juggling a busy household

2 - It's less likely that you'll have to wait to use a piece of equipment in the morning than during high peak time in the afternoon or evening 

3 - Mid-morning is often a busier time in the gym and early afternoon into the evening so, you'll be beating the crowds. 

4 - Your metabolism will be boosted and energy levels are increased

5 - A bi-product might be increased productivity during your work day 

6 - Morning workouts are natural mood boosters

As I bonus, I'm sharing a few workouts to knock out first thing in the morning while the rest of the world is still sleeping: 

 

 

 

 

//photo credit: www.pixabay.com//

 

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RECIPE: KID FRIENDLY BANANA SUSHI

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RECIPE: KID FRIENDLY BANANA SUSHI

For most kiddo's sushi is a stretch, but these banana sushi rolls are a fun way to snack and play with chopsticks. Plus, there is a good chance you'll already have the ingredients in your pantry. Set up a banana sushi bar as an afternoon snack or for summer camp.  It's sure to be a crowd-pleaser!

YOU'LL NEED: 

  • A banana per snacker! 
  • Nut butter or melted chocolate of choice 
  • Shredded coconut and/ or mini chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS: 

Peel banana and place on parchment paper.  Spread nut butter or melted chocolate over the banana and then top with toppings of choice. Slice, plate and serve with chopsticks or a fork ;) 

OTHER TOPPING IDEAS: 

  • Mini peanut butter or butterscotch chips
  • Rice Krispies
  • Sunflower Seeds

Really the topping ideas are endless - it's all personal preference to which flavor combination work best for you!  I'd love to hear how you top your banana sushi rolls! 

 

 

 

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I'm not vegan, I don't practice yoga, and I am still not sure about oils - so I can't be healthy - or can I?

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I'm not vegan, I don't practice yoga, and I am still not sure about oils - so I can't be healthy - or can I?

I'm not vegan, I don't practice yoga, and I am still not sure about oils - so I can't be healthy - or can I?

 

I'm calling bullsh*t!

It's so easy to become overwhelmed by feeling you need to follow one specific way of eating, moving and thinking to have weight loss success when all you really need is to be open and willing to embrace change. 

Thanks to social and mainstream media it can be quite overwhelming to determine which lifestyle is the right one to "choose" when striving for improved health.  There isn't a hard line in the sand that states you must be 100% vegan or paleo to be "healthy", attending yoga classes every day isn't mandatory to be "healthy" and you surely don't have to apply massive amounts of essential oils to be deemed "healthy". 

In fact, as a wellness advocate and someone who has been on this journey for five years and counting - my yoga pants have never been to a yoga class, I support those who embrace a vegan lifestyle, but this girl won't give up her love for BBQ, and let's just say I am dipping my toes into this idea of essential oils.  I'm more into lifting heavy, making sweat angels on our home gym floor and dropping an f-bomb right after I finish meditating or journaling. 

When I first enrolled and began attending online classes at IIN (Institute for Integrative Nutrition) I felt that only path to being a successful coach and have success in my own personal journey was to become a plant-eating green juice drinking yogi who bathed in patchouli oil. The IIN community leaned toward plant-based lifestyles, but it wasn't a requirement merely a suggestion and until I learned the concept of bio-individuality I thought my days of BBQ were numbered. 

One of the biggest issues I have surrounding certain diets and fitness communities is that if you don't embrace the lifestyle to a T you are always waiting for the internet trolls to find you and burn you at the stake.  To be honest, there isn't ONE perfect diet or lifestyle on the planet and if a coach or product advocate is trying to tell you that their way is the only way... run!  

My theory has always been and will always be to do the best you can with what you have access to, what you can afford, and what brings you the most happiness. 

As a coach, it's my job to help you uncover what works best for you;  your lifestyle and your goals.  It's about designing a blueprint or a foundation that works FOR you - not against you. Using bio-individuality principles provides freedom and flexibility to pull from different "diets", lifestyles, forms of movement and spirituality to create a foundation that you can always call "home"

My lifestyle or bio-individuality foundation is a combination of several different practices and I don't feel any less healthy or connected to my wellness than if I were to lean toward a vegan - green juice drinking yogi lifestyle. Instead of feeling the need to go 100% in any particular direction -I've pulled what works and left what doesn't for someone else.  

MY FOUNDATION LOOKS A LITTLE LIKE THIS: 

  • My body thrives on protein and healthy fats - leaving out grains and legumes has improved my digestion and I stopped feeling sluggish. One could say I am paleo or primal 
  • I am dabbling in my spiritual path - I was born into a household that wasn't overly religious but would consider myself a Christian but strives to connect with the universe on a daily basis. 
  • I love cold brew coffee with heavy cream just as much as I love a green smoothie or acai berry bowl. 
  • Movement for me is a stress reliever and a way to challenge myself to push beyond the limitations I often oppose on myself.   I enjoy throwing around weights, making sweat angels and celebrating PR's with colorful adjectives!
  • Personal development has become a cornerstone for my personal growth and understanding of who I want to be. 

Am I healthy - your damn right I am!  

Oh, I almost forgot - I am falling in love with essential oils so I sort of smell like a hippie from time to time. 

When I begin working with a new client we spend a lot of time becoming crystal clear on what healthy looks like, feels like and means to them. Two clients can have a radically different vision of what healthy means to them and it's my job to help bring together all of the wellness puzzle pieces and create a foundation that will always be "home". 

Some of my clients have been SAD (Standard American Diet) eaters of fast and processed foods with little to no movement that want to clean up their diet and kiss the couch goodbye,  then I have others who want to incorporate more plant-based eating and gentle movements like barre or yoga into their lifestyle because lifting heavy weights and leaning toward a paleo lifestyle isn't of interest.  At the end of the day, it doesn't matter what you label a diet or a lifestyle as long as you feel better physically, mentally and emotionally. 

I do however only have one lifestyle that I REFUSE to get behind and will not support.  That is a lifestyle centered around highly processed nutrient lacking foods, excessive couch surfing, and a negativity mindset.  This lifestyle is often brought on due to overwhelm, stress, confusion, and hopelessness -- but fear not, if this you or someone you love and care about - their lifestyle isn't an ultimatum, it's a choice and with a little hand-holding and a kick in the a$$ they can be healthy too.  

Don't sit on the sidelines and let your health and wellness slip away because you feel like you need to have it all figured out.   Instead, try a new style of eating or a workout for a few weeks and keep what works and ditch what doesn't.  Find support, hire a coach (shameless plug), but remember you just have to willing to embrace change. 

 

 

 

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MY LOVE FOR SMOOTHIES started when...

I first began my health and wellness journey!  I was always running out the door and skipping breakfast.  

My day was already starting in the negatives because I was zapped of energy before I even got into my car.  

Rather than load up on healthy options, I headed straight for the drive-thru and sipped on a soda to kickstart my morning. 

Sound familiar? 

Ask yourself this series of questions: 

Are you ready to reclaim your health and vitality?

Are you tired being zapped of energy?

Do you wish you could lose 5+ pounds?

Do you wish you had more confidence when you walk into a room?

Did you answer YES to one or all of these questions?  If so, you're in the right place!  

I've created this 14 Day Done for You Smoothie Guide to take the guess work out of which smoothies to make and why.  You'll be armed with a shopping list, recipes, and a reference guide for making yourself a smoothie master in 14 days! 

As an added bonus you'll have a plan for kickstarting your weight loss, reclaiming your health, increasing your energy levels and a boosted immune system, you may even notice a vibrant and healthy glow to your skin in just the first week!  

This Done For You 14 Day Smoothie Challenge is for women just like you that want to:

Lose weight

Have glowing skin

Feel more confident

Sleep better

Get rid of any stomach bloat

Feel vibrant

and boost your immune system! 

Smoothies are the perfect way to get healthy!  You'll find yourself fuller and more satisfied throughout the day; long gone are the days of calorie counting or mid-day slumps.  

Are you ready to take back your health and give your body a brand NEW beginning?

In just 14 days, you can become the vibrant and empowered woman I know that you truly are! Are you ready to say YES to a Happier and Healthier you?

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ISSUE 01: LIVEunboxed Wellness Magazine

I'm so excited to share the launch of my first ever magazine!  This morning I was my brain was bursting with this idea to create a magazine for my clients and potential clients.  Rather than sit on this idea for the next 6 months, I decided to sip on cold brew and design away!  

  • Is the layout perfect? Nope! 
  • Did I spell words wrong? More than likely!
  • Did I take action and bring this idea to life? You bet!  

Allow me to share the cover of Issue 01 of the LIVEunboxed Wellness Magazine! 

If you'd be so kind, leave a comment below with your thoughts on this first issue. I'd love to bring you more content on the topics you might be struggling with in your wellness journey or things you'd like to learn more about!  

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KETO: TWICE BAKED zucchini BOATS

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KETO: TWICE BAKED zucchini BOATS

Since it's summer and zucchini tends to grow like crazy you might find yourself with an overabundance of zucchini and making endless batches of zucchini bread gets a bit boring.  To keep with the twice baked, cream cheese, sour cream theme I am sharing a new recipe for zucchini boats today.  

Zucchini boats make for an awesome side dish that you can throw together in a few minutes and serve with burgers, brats, bbq chicken or as a stand-alone meal. 

YOU'LL NEED THE FOLLOWING: 

3 - Medium sized zucchini to make 6 boats 

A pinch of garlic powder

4 - 6 pieces of bacon chopped

4 ounces of softened cream cheese

3 - 4 tablespoons of sour cream 

A generous handful of shredded cheddar cheese

TO ASSEMBLE: 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Cut ends off of each washed zucchini and cut lengthwise.  Use a spoon to scoop out flesh from the center of zucchini and place into a mixing bowl.  Once you've removed the flesh from all of the boats - combine flesh with cream cheese, sour cream, garlic, chopped bacon, and shredded cheddar cheese.  Mix well and fill each of the boats with the mixture and place onto a foil-lined baking sheet. 

Place into the oven for 20 minutes.  Closely watch the zucchini boats as the outside might become too soft.  You can broil the zucchini boats for a few minutes to brown the cheese on top.  

WAYS TO MODIFY: 

  • You could use vegan cheeses, cream cheese, and sour cream 
  • Add cilantro, chives or parsley to the mixture
  • You could call a protein source to the mixture as well. 

 

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GET YOUR GREEN ON (RECIPE INCLUDED)

Why are smoothies important for breakfast?


Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and sometimes it just doesn't fit into our schedule the way it should. How we begin the day will determine how the rest of the day goes. It will determine if we feel energized or if we feel dragging with a lack of energy. What we put in our bellies is directly related to how we physically feel. So if you are a skip breakfast and grab the coffee mug morning person then this blog is totally for you.


We all need and crave energy. I know I do! Sometimes it is so easy to want to stop by the nearest fast food joint or even forget breakfast and just get through the morning on 1-2 cups of coffee for the energy needed to survive the day. I don't want you to just survive through the day though; I want you to thrive through the day. I also don't want you to go on the "crash and crave" roller coaster for the entire day. If you begin your morning with caffeinated coffee and sugar, you will crash, and you will be either too tired to make it through your responsibilities or you will be reaching for another cup of coffee to get through a few more hours.

Smoothies are another quick alternative to a fast breakfast that can help energize us throughout the entire day. When you toss in some greens, a little fruit, and a healthy liquid like coconut water you are bound to feel energetic and ready to take on the day. Starting the day with a smoothie also gives you well needed antioxidants which help protect our bodies from free radicals, and it is a great low glycemic start. Eating a low glycemic breakfast will help curb your sugar cravings for the entire day and it will also help with not crashing.

 

Next time you want a quick breakfast, try a delicious smoothie that will leave you feeling energized and motivated. A morning smoothie will provide your body with the nutrients it needs to produce natural energy and naturally boost your metabolism. So, what are you reaching for tomorrow morning? I know I will be pulling out my blender and getting ready for some long lasting energy.

My go to recipe is: 

  • A handful of spinach or kale
  • A half cup of diced fresh pineapple
  • A half of a cutie (clementine)
  • Two slices of lemon with the rind 
  • 2 scoops of protein powder

During meal prep combine all of the fruits and veggies into a ziplock baggie and place into the freezer.  **This simple step will save you a lot of time in the morning.** 

Add the contents of the baggie to your blender with a choice of protein (greek yogurt, whey protein powder, or plant based protein powder) with ice and water.  You can also use coconut water as an added boost. 

Blend and enjoy!

 

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I am thankful for who I used to be...

Two Sunday’s ago, we decided dusted off our paddleboards for the season and spent the afternoon on the water.  My absolute happy place.

With snacks and water packed all - it was time to throw on our swimsuits and hit the road.

Panic set in…

Truth is… I’ve been less than perfect on my diet and I surely missed more than a few workouts as of late, but I decided to throw on a two-piece anyway.  Let me add this, I am the sporty bathing suit type of girl - I would much rather keep everything in it’s place than spilling out and attempting to be something I am not.

Of course, I had to do a quick check in the mirror to see how my suit was fitting. As I closed the door to reveal our full length mirror I surprised myself.   Rather than see horror on my face, I saw a smile and in that moment I was damn proud of myself.

The last time I felt confident in a bathing suit was some time in my teens. Since the late 2000’s - I’ve rocked tankini’s or shorts & tee-shirts rather than expose myself and the entire beach to my less than ripped midsection, thick thighs and tan-less body. So even leaving the house in this two-piece with the intention of being viewed by the public was an accomplishment on it’s own. 

As we left the house with paddleboards, snacks and cooler in tow I couldn’t get the smile off my face.  I was proud, really proud of myself because endless amounts of blood, sweat and tears made this day possible.  On the way to the lake I thought about who I was in 2006 - bitter, stressed, tired, overworked, no self love and definitely no self care. A girl lost in her own world… scared to death to let go of who she was in order to see who she could become.

I had to give thanks to the girl I once was. It was her that led me on this wild journey of transformation. She taught me to find love within myself.  That my struggles wouldn’t be fixed with the purchase of a new designer bag and/or shoes. She taught to find inner peace through meditation, journaling and exercise. She showed me how to treat food as fuel rather than my only source of comfort.  As her layers shed, her inner strength grew in order to push through all of the mental, emotional and physical blocks that stood in her way. 

All of the emotions and thoughts I’ve carried about who I was always came with negativity and hate.  Never have I, given her any ounce of thanks… and today… I THANK HER!  

 

 

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Are you craving a lifestyle transformation and have been stuck in a hamster wheel turning to quick fixes, crash diets, and telling yourself tomorrow.... We should talk.  I used to be that girl that would opt for every fad diet, pill or potion on the market. I'd promise to get my sh*t together Monday and never did until I enlisted help. 

Working with a coach allows you the opportunity to transform in ways you might have never though possible and even if you aren't 100% ready, sometimes it's better to jump in and find your way than have everything planned out. 

I'm opening 5 Coaching Spots for my 12-Week Signature Coaching Program.  It's the only summer/early fall program that I will be offering and would love to help you transform.  Complete the contact form on my website or sign up for a coaching call.  Together, we will discuss your current challenges and determine if my style of coaching is right for you! 

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I AM SO GRATEFUL

I AM SO GRATEFUL

Now, I would like to leave you with a moment of gratitude. A blissful, and abundant thank you. I am so inspired by everything you've done for your body, and everything that you're going to do in the future. When you are well, you radiate love & light to everyone around you.

Never forget that your body loves you. I love you, for you are as much as part of me as anyone else. Please know that I'm always here for you - even if we haven't worked together yet. You can call me, email me, or send me good vibes any time that you like. I hope that, from this moment on, you live life abundantly.

Celebrate, rejoice, connect, gather, and embrace.

Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy every little moment.

 

 

// GET IN TOUCH //

Schedule a test drive coaching consultation with me

Work with me privately for 1:1 Coaching

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WHEEL OF LIFE (free workbook download)

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WHEEL OF LIFE (free workbook download)

When we feel out of balance it's often hard to see the areas of our lives that are screaming to be nourished, because it feels like our world is crashing down around us. We've become a society that loves to throw ourselves deeper into our work when our personal lives go sideways. Sometimes our work is the exact distraction that we need and other times it's a way for us to disconnect from what is really wrong. 

Personally, I was and am the type of creative that will throw herself into her work when her personal life takes a shit.  I didn't always know this about myself until I did the Wheel of Life exercise.  On the outside, it appeared that I had it all together, but on the inside I was a mess and didn't know how to dig myself out.  By uncovering the three areas that needed nourished the most, I was able to focus set aside time to give those areas extra T-L-C.  For me, my areas of struggle were are: physical activity, health, and spirituality.  

Above is my real time Wheel of Life.  

Personally my three areas that are in need of nourishment are: 

  1. Spirituality: I haven't been meditating or journaling daily. Since reviewing my Wheel of Life - I've been committed to daily personal development in the form of reading one chapter of a personal development book and boy has it been life changing!  I feel clearer throughout the day and in alignment of how I want to think and feel. 
  2. Career: I've been going through a power struggle between launching my coaching business and maintaining my photography business - my goal is to focus on the work that I love doing in both businesses and continue to focus on growth.  Additionally, I am planning to dedicate one day a week to 100% focus on each of the two businesses. 
  3. Creativity: I've fallen into the trap of only using my camera for only business purposes and not having a personal project.  I'm going to use my journaling and meditation time to let a personal project unfold organically.  

How it works.  The Wheel of Life is broken down into a series of wedges that range from personal to professional categories.  You'll place a dot within each of the wedges and depending on the location of the dot, your level of happiness or discontent will be indicated.  

Once you've determined your three areas that are running smoothly and well nourished, you'll dig into the three areas that are begging for your attention.  You'll also make a small action plan of ways to nourish those areas. 

For example, maybe creativity is suffering and selecting a personal project that you carve out 2 - 5 hours per week to work on will make you feel inspired again.  Or maybe you've let your physical activity fall to the wayside and an series of action steps for you would be to 1) determine the type of movement that you would enjoy engaging in 2) scheduling time for those classes or workouts and 3) actually getting off your butt and attending the class or workout.

By keeping the action steps bite sized and attainable you should be able to incorporate the tiny changes into your life without much hesitation or disruption to your life.  

A few tips: 

  • Do try to radically authentic when determining your dot placement
  • Don't try to fix every part of the wheel at once 
  • Enlist help in the form of an accountability buddy or coach
  • Revisit the Wheel of Life exercise once a month to ensure you are making progress 

Once you've downloaded the Wheel of Life freebie and spent time investigating the areas of your life that you are well nourished and those that are screaming for love... leave a comment below with how you plan to take action!  

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Wait, what? You’re a health coach?

Wait, what? You’re a health coach?

 

When I introduce myself as a holistic health coach, most of the time people are a little confused at what it is that I do exactly.

The simple way to explain health coaching: I teach my clients how to reach and exceed their health and wellness goals by providing support, motivation, accountability, and perspective. You’ll learn how to listen to your body, make minor changes that have a lasting impact, and create a foundation that your new baseline or new normal will be moving forward.  

Having a health coach is no different than a professional athlete having a coach to help them reach and exceed their goals.  The only difference is that my coaching revolved around their health and wellness.  

As a certified holistic health coach, I educate and support my clients to achieve their health goals through lifestyle and behavior adjustments.  Understanding that there is no size fits all approach to health and wellness we work together to create a plan that works you, your lifestyle and your goals.  

During our sessions, I am part-listener and part-advice-giver, but really encouraging and teaching you how to listen to your own body and decide what is right for you. 

Of course, there are plenty of tiny steps that we can take to make improvements in our lives from drinking more water, eating more greens, or transitioning to a whole foods diet opposed to relying on processed foods.  I will help and guide you into selecting better options, but I won’t push you into a specific way of eating or living.  

As a holistic health coach, I guide you into living an overall happier and healthier life.  We go beyond your relationship with food to include your relationships, physical activity, spirituality, and career.  For many of us having a healthy diet is only a piece of the puzzle and if we are out of sync or balance in the other aspects of our life, we aren’t able to be truly healthy.  In my mind, your health doesn’t stop at what you put at the end of your fork!  

To learn more about my 12-week coaching program click here ------> Signature Coaching Overview

// GET IN TOUCH //

Schedule a test drive coaching consultation with me

Work with me privately for 1:1 Coaching

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