Haywood Fitness: 2014

Monday, October 13, 2014

Presentation for Eagle Scouts Personal Fitness Merit Badge

A Presentation for Eagle Scouts Personal Fitness Merit Badge that we gave to over 100 Boy Scouts on October 11th 2014, for the Educational portion of their Personal Fitness Merit Badge.

Health & fitness workshop 2014 Presentation

A presentation on Health & Fitness. Covering the following topics: What does clean eating mean?
The “Dirty Dozen” Organic vs. Not
Eat This/Not That
Eating Healthy on a Budget
The Power in Preparation
The 80/20 Rule


Sunday, July 13, 2014

Nine Years of Wedded "Bliss"

This was the scene two days before our nine year wedding anniversary. I was in the bathroom helping our two year old transport her poop in her diaper to the potty (oh the joys of potty training!) when somehow the poop rolled all over me and the floor. After I cleaned up the floor I was upstairs changing my clothes when I heard my husband yelling. I guess the smell of the poop got to our daughter and she threw up everywhere. Awesome. Of course this led to a fight (because it had to be one of our faults) and I grumpily exclaimed, "Yeah-we probably aren't going to even make it to our nine year anniversary!!"  Five minutes later we were chatting as if the event and argument had never happened and an hour later we were holding hands at church happily worshiping God together. Welcome to our life and marriage.

I have had a handful of people tell me how lucky I am that my husband and I enjoy running and working out together, going to church together, etc.I often share that this took a LONG TIME. When we first got married there were countless times when I would go workout on my own and try to get my husband to care about fitness and eating well and he just rolled his eyes at me and went back to playing video games and drinking his mountain dew. For years in the beginning of our marriage I had to talk him into going to church with me. Now, he is super involved in church and there are some Sundays when he goes without me. We have evolved so much as a couple. The good news is that we have evolved together. But, it took a lot of years to get to this place and to get on the same page. There are still days and circumstances where we are not on the same page together.

Over the last nine years my husband and I have witnessed and experienced divorces, depression, job losses/unemployment, deaths, and a million other life shaking events. We have fought over money, how we take care of kids, who is going to change the next diaper, not being romantic enough, not having sex enough, dishes, more dishes, and I have even been known to throw things at him  from time to time (I'm not proud to admit that). Some days marriage is NOT FUN. It is hard work. At least a few times a week I wonder how married couples survive. They definitely don't make it off of romance and love. If I was going to stay married because of the butterflies, excitement, and fun then our marriage would have been over a long time ago. Don't get me wrong-we do sometimes have those moments in our marriage-but they are few and far between. We stay married because we choose to and we wouldn't want it any other way. One of my favorite quotes goes something like "My worst days with you are still better than my best days without you." The days I am frustrated in my marriage I choose to focus on the positives of being married and I think about life without my spouse. I would much rather deal with the negative aspects of our marriage than to not be with him at all. Here is what I have learned so far in the last nine years of wedded "bliss":

1. Forgive daily-I stink at this. I take everything personally, I am super sensitive, and I hold grudges. I have to work extra hard to forgive. But work at it-it's worth it.

2. Prince Charming does not exist-it is so easy to let your mind wander off and think what it would be like if you ended up with someone else. Well guess what? I am sure Prince Charming farts, has bad mood days, and likes to play X-box way too much too. The grass will always looks greener. It's not. Focus on the good qualities of your spouse.

3. Laugh together-Is it fun having to turn off of an exit after your child threw up all over the backseat on the way home from vacation and you have to clean them up in McDonalds and smell vomit the rest of the trip home? NO! But, laugh about it. These are the things that make the best memories and give you the stories to talk about. One of the best things about having a spouse is having someone wh0 has your back and can share life with you. The good, the bad, and the ugly.

4. Keep God center in your marriage-If you make your marriage about supporting your spouse and fulfilling God's will on earth for you as individuals and as a couple it gives your marriage purpose and gives you a common goal. Find out what that goal is. Trust that God can heal, change people, and strengthen your marriage.

5.  Life is short-Find the great moments within the messy ones. When you look at our family pictures and other's family pictures you don't see what happened before or after the perfect picture was taken. Enjoy the moments (especially with the little ones) because they go by so fast.

Wow! I can't believe that we were twenty two and twenty-four when we got married. We were immature, clueless, naive young people. Some days we still are. I think it is a miracle that our marriage has survived and I am so fortunate and glad that it has. We have a long way to go. We have a lot left to learn and conquer. It is exciting and scary all in one. I am so thankful and blessed that I picked who I did nine years ago and I hope and pray that we can celebrate a million more years together!



Friday, May 30, 2014

Tips for Exercising While Pregnant

I was working out pretty actively when I got pregnant. I originally was planning on working out up until I had the baby but I had some unexplainable bleeding during my first tri-mester and had to quit working out as hard. When I asked my doctor how much working out I could do while pregnant he told me to watch my heart rate. The first time I tried to run and watch my heart rate it had me pretty much speed walking. I was really discouraged because based off of keeping my heart rate low enough I could barely work out! Since that time in my life I have done quite a bit of research and learned about working out while pregnant during my personal training certification. Here is what I learned and this seems to be a good rule of thumb to go by.

Tips for Exercising While Pregnant:

1. Eat extra calories if you are working out. On average you should consume about three hundred extra calories while pregnant. If you are working out you should increase those calories.

2. Avoid contact sports- for example, skiing, mountain biking, and soccer. You also want to keep in mind that your balance will be messed up so you want to watch doing anything that needs any extra coordination.

3. Wear lose, comfortable clothes that will allow you stay cool

4. Avoid lying flat on your back after the 1st Trimester. If you want to do ab exercises after the 1st trimester you will want to do them standing up

5. It is okay to run while pregnant-if you ran before you got pregnant. Listen to your body and do what feels right. If you begin feeling uncomfortable then stop.

6. Don't get stuck on the heart rate thing. It is better to remember to just not work out to the point of exhaustion or get out of breath. You should be able to carry on a conversation.

7. If you didn't work out before you got pregnant you can workout while pregnant just keep it to light walking or low intense workouts. Now is not the time to get in shape or try something new.

There are TONS of benefits to working out while pregnant. It is good for you and the baby and can even help ease pregnancy side effects as well as help with an easier labor.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Weight Gain During Pregnancy

How much weight should I gain and how many calories should I consumer while pregnant?

I have always been very conscientious about my weight and careful about what I eat. So, when I got pregnant I thought "Yes! Free Pass! Eat Whatever I want!!!" It didn't help that while I was pregnant I did not experience any morning sickness and I had an amazing appetite. I was so hungry all of the time. I craved everything and anything especially chicken wings, root beer, and mangoes.

A couple months into my pregnancy I went to my regular doctor visit and I asked him if my weight gaining was okay and he replied "Well, it is fine-you are just a little ahead of schedule". After the appointment I sat in my car and cried. During my entire pregnancy I heard two extremes either 1. You look like you have hardly gained any weight-you are all baby or 2. Wow! You really gained weight. It totally messed with my head!

I ended up gaining 58 pounds while pregnant and I couldn't blame it on my baby because she arrived three weeks early at only 5 pounds.   Next time around I plan on being smarter about my weight gain. I now understand that it is a misconception that you should eat for two. It was so difficult for me to lose that much weight so next time around I plan on being more careful.

Here are the guideline that I have found that are good to go by:

-In the beginning of your pregnancy stick with an extra 300 calories a day. Towards the end of your pregnancy you can add up to 500 calories. If you are carrying more than one child or workout a lot you might need to add in extra calories. It is a good idea to speak with your physician.

-If you are already at an average weight you should gain about 25-35 pounds during your pregnancy. If you are underweight while getting pregnant you can gain about 28-40 pounds and if you are considered overweight you should only gain 15-25 pounds. So, a good average of weight to gain is 25 pounds.

The important thing  is that you feel good and that your baby is healthy. I think it is okay to eat some extra chicken wings once in a while (come on your hormones are raging!) but as with anything keep everything in moderation.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Sharing about Shakeology

As long as I have known my husband it has been a battle for him to eat healthy. He is not a big fan of vegetables or fruits. When I first met him the mention of the word "salad" or " lettuce" freaked him out. It was hard for me to understand this because I have always loved fruits and vegetables (don't get me wrong I love my meat and sweets too!) I was always worried about his lack of nutrition and what I could do to help him (other than to disguise his fruits and vegetables!)

This starts my journey with Shakeology. When my husband first told me about Shakeology the first thing I thought was "Shake-what?!" and then next thing I thought (or said!) was "Yeah-I am NOT spending that much on a drink!".  Like most battles my husband won. He convinced me to just take money out of our monthly grocery budget and not spend as much on groceries since this would replace meals he would eat (okay-not a bad argument). So, we ordered the shakes. I wanted nothing to do with them since he had to talk me into them, but he absolutely loved them.

Fast forward a few months later. I was home recovering from a C-section and could not move very well and I had no energy to think about what to make for a meal. However, I KNEW I had to continue to get nutrients and eat well since I was breastfeeding. I just didn't have an appetite or energy to do so. My "good mom" genes kicked in and I caved. I asked my husband to fix me a Shakeology shake. At least I knew from other mom's and doctors that Shakeology was safe to drink while breastfeeding. I soon found myself asking my husband to make me a shake every day before he left for work. I would sip on it while I was home with our new baby. I would grab veggies or other light, healthy quick snacks in addition to this. In one month with absolutely NO exercise (not even light walking) I had dropped 30 lbs and I felt great (well other than the pain from my surgery). Shakeology was my new best friend! We even had to start ordering two bags of it a month because I was stealing all of his.

Today I am fully recovered from my C-section and back to work and working out. Shakeology is still my B.F.F because it is SO convenient. I drink it every morning for breakfast. Sometimes even on my way to work or once I am there checking my emails. I will also sometimes drink a second shake on my lunch break if there aren't any other healthy, quick alternatives at home. Even if  I end up eating crappy the other meals I at least know I got in one healthy meal that day.

The other thing that I love about Shakeology is that I can drink it having milk sensitivities. I select the "Vegan" option of it which is made with pea and rice proteins rather than whey. I mix it with Almond milk. So, I am not consuming any dairy. However, we do have non-vegan options for people who don't mind dairy. Here are the flavors you can choose from; Vegan Chocolate or Tropical Strawberry, Regular Chocolate, Greenberry, or Vanilla. Again, I prefer to make them with Almond milk but you can use water or regular milk. The chocolate is very versatile because you can add peanut butter, a banana, coffee etc.

My husband and I loved the Shakeology shakes so much that we actually signed up to be Beachbody coaches so that we could get the shakes at a discounted rate. If you can't afford them this is also an alternative option for you too!

Take a minute to watch my video on how I make Shakeology and see how quick and easy it really is.

If you have questions or are interested in trying a sample let me know.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

What does Eating Clean Mean?

 What Does Eating Clean Mean?

Eating clean (EC) means staying away from highly processed foods such as desserts, candy, pop, and breads. Eating clean is going back to the basics from a long time ago.  EC will give you the healthiest options, most nutrients and energy as well as prevent horrible things such as diabetes and cancer. If you are feeling tired, have gained weight or have any other uncomfortable symptoms (such as bloating, irritable bowel, headaches, irritability) it could very well be your diet and eating too many processed foods.

When you first start to eat clean you may initially feel more tired or sick because your body is used to running on a bunch of sugar, fats, and caffeine. So, it is important to give it time. Some people can comfortably quit bad habits (such as drinking diet pop) cold turkey while others have to wean themselves off of it. For example, if you currently drink one can of pop a day then you can probably quit cold turkey. However, if you drink three or more cans of pop a day you should gradually reduce the amount of cans you drink each week.

Every time you put food in your mouth you should ask yourself "Does this have nutritional value?" You need to eat to live, not live to eat. Eating is providing  fuel for your body not a mood pick me up, hobby or activity. We (Americans) have turned eating into a social activity and a high or addiction. We need to change the way we think about food.

It may take a while to break your addiction to food. But, I promise you that over time healthy foods will be more appealing and processed foods will not be. I can speak from example. I used to drink up to nine cans of mountain dew a day and now I can't even bare to drink one can! This will need to be a lifestyle change, a process, and a journey. Don't give up!

Here are some ways to determine if food is clean or processed:

Processed: It has an expiration date, comes in a package or box

Clean: You can grow it in a garden or it was derived naturally from the ground or a seed

Tip: Shop on the outside of the grocery store in the produce aisles. The inside aisles have all of the processed foods.

Tip: Check the ingredients list: If it has a ton of ingredients don't buy it.  If it contains words in the list that you cannot pronounce, don't buy it.  If an ingredient ends  in -ose it is most likely some form of sugar, don't buy it.

Eating Healthy on a Budget

Eating Healthy on a Budget

I am by no means an expert on eating on a budget. In fact, this is one major area in our lives that we are trying to improve. So, that is why I am going to be sharing what I learn along the way in case it helps anyone else out as well. Whenever I walk into the grocery store I always vow that I will only spend X amount of money. Then, before I know it all of these enticing things jump out at me and I throw them in the cart. Most of the time they are healthy food items. But, that doesn't justify over spending. Well, last shopping trip I was determined to not let it get the best of me. So, this is what I did:

1. Plan enough meals and snacks for the week

2. Make a list based on those meals. Before you make the list look through your kitchen to make sure you don't already have some of the stuff (I am famous for buying stuff that I already had tucked away that I forgot I had!)

3. Look through your coupon organizer to see if you have any coupons that you can use. Just use coupons on things that you actually need. I mean-do you really need poptarts just because they are $1.00 off?

4. Set a limit (goal) and take out just that amount of cash.

5. Go to the cheapest grocery stores first. If you have an ALDI's or a comparable store go there first. Take your list in with you and as you find the items on the list cross them off. Whatever items (if there are any left) that you couldn't find then go to the next cheapest store and purchase the rest of the items there.

6. Once you run out of food for the week-DO NOT go back and buy more until the designated time to go again unless it is for something you HAVE to have such as baby formula. You would be amazed at how much stuff you can come up with around your cupboards even if it means eating cereal for two days in a row.

What we got for under $100:

Last time I went grocery shopping I took my husband and daughter with me. We turned the entire shopping trip into a fun challenge. We were so excited when we met our challenge. We got the following items (a weeks worth of groceries for three) for under $100.00. We are using these groceries to follow the 21 day fix diet plan we are on so all of the items we bought were very healthy!

Store 1

ALDI: Bag of Sweet Potatoes, Container of mixed nuts, Agave Nectar, Sea Salt Grinder, 2 cans of olives, 2% shredded cheddar cheese, 2 containers of organic baby spinach, Raw head of broccoli, 2 Mangos, bag of navel oranges, Graham crackers, pack of kiwi fruit, six cartons of almond milk, bunch of grapes, Strawberries, Ricotta cheese, mushrooms, 2 jars of organic pasta sauce, two containers of lowfat cottage cheese, blueberries, raspberries, 2 bunches of bananas=$77.36

Store 2

Buehlers: Organic Eggs, 2 boxes organic mac & cheese, sugar in the raw, 1 whole roasted chicken, four avocados, bunch of kale=$12.64

Grand Total= $90.00

A couple last reminders! It is okay to buy generic. Some factories make the same food and just slap different labels on them. You don't need to buy everything organic and you also don't need to buy everything name brand. Focus on buying clean, unprocessed food and buy local anytime it is possible!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

What Are You Avoiding?


What Are You Avoiding?

We all have that one thing (or few things) that we have been avoiding doing. For some of us it might be tackling losing weight, forgiving someone, cleaning out our basement, or starting a work-out routine. The whole out of sight, out of mind mantra is very convenient in this area in our lives. "I will get to that one day" we think. I don't know what struck me hard when 2014 hit but something did. It might have been that last year I became a mom, hit thirty, or that my step-mom passed away from cancer. Whatever it was that hit me I caught fire that every little thing I have been avoiding in my life needed taken care of...NOW. I don't want any regrets and I don't want to fall short of being the best that I can be. For that reason I am hitting things hard. My hope is that if I try to do a bunch of things then hopefully I will at least accomplish a few of them. This weekend I tackled something incredibly embarassing. In fact the only reason that I am even publicly sharing this is because I know that someone out there can relate to having a similar issue.

My husband has told me our entire marriage that I have issues when it comes to buying gift bags, wrapping paper, and tissue paper for gifts. "We have a whole box of all of that stuff downstairs-why do you need to buy any more?" Well, let me tell you my answer for that. 1. I like buying gift bags. To me-it is just as fun buying the perfect gift bag as it is buying the gift. I usually try to find a gift bag that matches the theme of the party, the person's personality, or the gift itself. In my eyes the gift bag is part of the present.   2. The big box in the basement full of gift wrap is very intimidating. It is so big and full of stuff that I don't even know where to begin. If I buy a gift bag at the store while I am buying the present I can avoid eye contact with that huge box of craziness and pretend it doesn't exist. Crazy, right? Well-this is my one big thing I have been avoiding for a long time. Until now.

So what changed? Well, my husband and I are doing a Financial Peace class where we have to focus on every dollar and how we are spending it. Therefore, I can no longer purchase gift bags without feeling guilty or feeling like I am hurting the greater cause. Last night I did what we all need to do- I faced the thing I was avoiding head on. I stared that ginormous box of gift wrap in the face and it was terrifying! I began pulling stuff out of the box and sorting it into piles. As I began sorting I realized how absolutely ridiculous it was that I had been purchasing gift wrap. I had enough gift bags, boxes, and wrapping paper to start my own Hallmark store!!! I found myself feeling ashamed, anxious, giddy, embarrassed and freed as I cleaned out this box and sorted. I then created labels for each storage tub so that I could now easily find the category of gift wrap I would be looking for. Now, instead of looking for that perfect bag at the store-I will look through the tubs in my basement.

Looking back I bet not a single family member or friend of mine can tell me what I wrapped their present in. In fact, I bet they can't tell me what gift I even got them for that matter! So, why was I so consumed with this gift wrap obsession? Why was I wasting money that we shouldn't be spending?  Because it was easier! Just like it is easier to eat whatever we want and continue doing what is comfortable...even if it isn't right. Well, those days are over. If you are reading this and you will be receiving a gift from me expect it to come in a really tacky wrapping paper. I have vowed to not buy any more gift wrap until what I have is all gone.

I don't share this just so you are amused by my obession with gift wrap (although you probably already are!) I share this because as I mentioned before we all have that one thing that we have been avoiding. We have that one thing sitting in our basement that we are avoiding eye contact with. The hardest part is getting started. Once you get started it is so much easier. I hope that this encourages you to face that one thing you are avoiding head on. I promise if you do you will be better because of it. You will feel a sense of accomplishment, release, and freedom that you haven't felt before. Best wishes!


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Monday, February 17, 2014

Sixteen Can't Miss Weight Loss Tips

Sixteen Can't Miss Weight Loss Tips

I have read probably every exercise and nutrition book and article on the market. I have always been fascinated with health and losing weight. I find great joy in watching "the Biggest Loser" and "Makeover-Weight Loss Edition". I am like a sponge obsessed with learning new weight loss and exercise tips. Through my online fitness coaching I often try to share everything I have learned with my friends and family but it is so hard to summarize everything I know and would like to share. So, I have finally done just that! I am sharing with you my sixteen tips for weight loss. These are principles that I apply in my own life that have worked for me. I promise that if you do these things you will see awesome results! If you would like further advice or are interested in speaking with me feel free to also sign up for a free account. I would love to help you in your fitness journey!

 Sixteen Can't Miss Weight Loss Tips:

1. Eat Breakfast-They call it Break-Fast for a reason. When you eat the first meal of the day you are breaking the fast from sleeping and you rev up your metabolism for the day. Try to eat within a half an hour from rising.

2. Eat every 3 hours-5 small meals- Think of your body like a furnace or a car. If you don't fuel the furnace then your body will not run properly. If you continuously fuel your body with proper nutrients and healthy snacks your metabolism will stay revved up. A lot of people have the misconception that if they starve themselves they will lose weight. If your body goes into starvation mode then it actually holds onto fat. Here is an example; 7am-eat breakfast, 10am-morning snack, 1pm-lunch, 4pm-afternoon snack & 7pm dinner (adjust this according to when you get up). Despite what we were taught growing up breakfast & lunch should be our bigger, heavier meals because we have the rest of the day to burn them off. Dinner should be a lighter meal like a salad with lean chicken breast.

3. Avoid eating 2-3 hours before bed-Your body cannot rest if it is trying to digest food all night. If you do not get enough proper rest you will not perform well during the day and your body won't have a chance to rest and rebuild.

4. Eat Clean-Eat as many organic and fresh fruits and vegetables as possible. You also can eat whole grains and healthier carbs (such a quinoa, sweet potatoes, and 100% whole wheat products). Avoid processed foods, white bread, candies & desserts.

5. Avoid Empty Calories-Whenever you eat something make sure it has a purpose for your body and nutritional value. You want to eat things that will provide you with nutrients, vitamins & minerals, and energy. A doughnut has none of those things. You need to eat to survive, not survive to eat. If you are eating (or drinking pop) and it doesn't have nutritional value you are simply eating for pleasure purposes. This is referred to as emotional eating. Everytime you go put food in your mouth ask yourself what the purpose is behind it.

6. Clean out your cupboards-This one is huge! The old saying "out of sight out of mind" is so true. If it is in your cupboard it is one step away. If you want something the chances of you taking time to go buy it and spend money are far less then if it is already in your cupboard. If you are serious about losing weight and getting healthy you MUST clean out your cupboards and replace your junk with healthier options. You also have to get your entire family or anyone else living in your house on board.

7. Do the 80/20 Rule-We are all human. We cannot be perfect all of the time. However, if we are "good" most of the time we will see results. If you try to eat well 100% of the time you will fail and then you will feel shameful about it. I recommend following the 80/20 rule. This means that you strive to eat well and workout 80% of the time and allow yourself a break 20% of the time. What does that look like? Say you worked out Monday and Tuesday and you also didn't slip up on your eating either days. On Wednesday someone brings birthday cake into the office and it is from your favorite bakery. Eat that cake! However, if you have a lot of co-workers and there is always some type of celebration you can't say yes everything. Pick your battles.

8. Make Working out a priority-DO NOT SAY "I don't have time". We all have the same 24 hours in a day and even the busiest people find time to workout. You have to make working out a priority just like eating, going to work or dropping the kids off at school. The easiest way for me to make it a priority is to workout first thing early in the morning before I go to work and before everyone else wakes up. This way I know that nothing else the rest of the day will interfere with my workout. If time is a problem you need to find a workout you can do in a short amount of times such as T-25 (25 minute workouts) or P90X3 (30 minute workouts)

9. Don't drink your calories-You will not believe the amount of calories you consume by drinking pop, juice or adding creamer and sugar to your coffee. Try to stick with water, black coffee or plain tea. I know a lot of people who lost weight simply by eliminating pop. Make sure to do it slowly though. Each week decrease the amount of pop you drink every day. Believe it or not I used to be addicted to Mountain Dew and I would drink up to nine cans a day. Now, just looking at it makes me feel sick.

10. Get a good support system (accountability group)-As a Beachbody coach I am constantly starting and joining my own accountability groups over Facebook. I cannot tell you how many mornings I woke up super tired and wanted to blow my workout off. However, I pushed through and did it because I knew I had to report back to my group that I did my workout. If you don't join a social media group then get a running buddy or friend to go to the gym with you. Ask someone to read your food journal that you write down everyday. Sign up to run a 5K or join a local fitness challenge.  If you have a lot of negative people in your life get rid of them! You need a good support system now more than ever.

11. Add Variety to your workout routine/mix it up-If you continue to do the same type of workout and moves your body will quit giving you new results. You cannot go to the same aerboics class or lift the same amount of weights and see results. You have to mix it up and create muscle confusion in your body. If you aren't sure what this looks like or don't know where to start I recommend trying a Beachbody workout program such as P90X or Turbo Fire. All of their programs have variety and change it up. The other benefit is that it keeps your interest and prevents you from being bored.

12. Don't pick just cardio or just strength training- Cardio is awesome for improving endurance and burning calories. Did you know though that if you lift weights and have toned muscles that you burn calories while you are sleeping and resting even? Up to an extra 300 calories a day! Do not worry about bulking up. Women do not naturally bulk up when they lift weights and even most men have to really work at it or take supplements to bulk up. Strength training is also important to help with everyday things like carrying groceries or holding the kiddos. Make sure to incorporate strength training into your weekly workout routine.

13. Go by inches & how you feel-not the scale-The scale is not an accurate assessment for how you are doing with your weight loss. You may be retaining fluids or have a gain in weight because of an increase in muscles mass. If you constantly stare at the scale you may become discouraged. Rather than focus on the scale measure how many inches you are losing, how your clothes are fitting, and most of all if you FEEL better. It is about getting healthy not hitting a perfect number!

14. Make it a lifestyle not a diet-I think it is natural instict to want what we can't have. So, the minute you declare you are on a diet you automatically want to eat more junk! If you truly want to maintain a healthy weight and get healthy and fit you have to decide that you will follow this lifestyle for the rest of your life. Keep the word diet out of your vocabulary and instead call them goals or new changes.

15. Find a substitute for your favorite foods-There are sooo many healthy alternatives to our favorite foods. You just have to do some digging and experimenting to find new recipes. I promise you though that you will acquire a taste for your new versions fo the food you love. For example, if you love pasta try to use 100% whole wheat noodles. I have replaced my sugary coffee creamer with chocolate almond milk and raw sugar. You can still have your favorite foods on occassion but there are great alternatives to try to curb your cravings on a more regular basis. Check out our recipe section for some new recipes to try today.

16. Find a good (healthy!) pre-workout drink & replacement meal drink-I would fall short on my workouts and my eating if it wasn't for my two best friends-Shakeology and Energy & Endurance. When I wake up I am NOT Suzie Sunshine. I am tired and I do not want to workout. However, I down a glass of Energy & Endurance and I am a new woman. I am energized and focused to workout. The same goes with Shakeology. I cannot tell you what a lifesaver it has been. There are so many times when I don't have time to make a healthy breakfast or lunch and I would normally swing through a drivethrough or grab another unhealthy alternative but instead I mix up Shakeology and BAM-nutrition in a shake! If you don't have back-up options or quick healthy fixes you are more likely to throw in the towel when it comes to eating and working out. I go with E&E and Shakeology because I have done my research and they truly are the cleanest supplements out there. They are worth the money!!

I encourage you to pick a handful of tips from this list and add a new one every week. The goal is to eventually do all sixteen. It may take some time to make these a habit or learn what works for you. But, there are no shortcuts. Losing weight is going to take discipline and action steps. Like I said earlier, if you follow these-I promise you will see results!

Best Wishes on your weight loss journey!


Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Natural Ways to Ease Anxiety


 Anxiety really stinks. The worse part if when you have it and people try to talk you into getting on prescription medicine. I am not against prescription medicine. I am however if you haven't already tried natural remedies first. A lot of people on medicine for anxiety claim that the medicine either doesn't help, adds additional symptoms, makes them feel emotionless or like a "zombie". When I heard these things I did not want to try prescription meds. However, I do know people who have had great success with them. I am offering some natural remedies that I have found that have worked for me. I believe that anytime we can heal our bodies naturally that is best. Here are my top eight natural things to try.

Natural Ways to Ease Anxiety:

1. Eliminate or minimize the things that are stressing you out (even if it is temporary)-When my anxiety was at it's worse I had to take a semester off from grad school as well as take a couple vacation days from work. Your anxiety will not get better if you continue to take on too much. Practice saying "no" and allow yourself time to relax and do fun things!

2. Try sipping Tea instead of Coffee- Caffeine can make you more anxious. Instead of drinking caffeinated beverages try drinking Passionflower, Ashwagondha, Eleutherococus, or Hawthorne tea. Also try to eliminate sugar and processed foods. Your diet can have a huge affect on your mood.

3. Exercise-Working out can be as effective as taking an anti-depressant. When you work out it releases feel good brain chemicals which alters your mood in a positive way.

4. Quit watching the news-The news typically focuses on negative things. If you are already feeling nervous, watching the news can make everything seem that much more stressful. If there is a major event going on someone WILL let you know. Turn the news off and only watch positive stuff if at all possible. Avoid reading news articles as well.

5. Meet with a Nutritonist or Chiropractor- They can offer alternative supplements to prescription medicine. Sometimes we have tired adrenal glands, low testosterone, or other hormonal imbalances in our bodies that are causing our anxiety to flair up. Nutrionists and Chiropractors can administer different types of tests to determine what areas we are lacking in order to help get our bodies back on track.

6. Talk Therapy-Sometimes just talking through your problems or the things that are stressing you out can be helpful. Find a counselor who specializes in Congitive Behavior Therapy. This type of therapy can eliminate our negative thought patterns and teach us new ways to view our problems and anxiety.

7. Pray-Not sure if you are a believer or not but if you are-PRAY! Prayer has a way to bring a peace over us and God is the ultimate healer. Just remember that he heals in HIS time not ours.

8. Find a support group-You know the old saying "Misery loves company".  Sometimes just talking to someone else who experiences anxiety symptoms (or has in the past) can be helpful. You won't feel so isolated or "weird". Talking to someone else who has anxiety can be a huge life saver!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

I Can't Afford to Eat Healthy!

I Can't Afford to Eat Healthy!

The excuse I hear most when I talk to people about eating organic, buying supplements, Shakeology, or workouts is "I can't afford it!". I have even used this excuse myself. What we need to all realize is that at some point we will all HAVE to pay the price. It is up to us whether we want to pay for it now or later. What do I mean by that? I mean that if we don't take care of our health now then down the road we will have huge medical bills, co-pays, prescriptions, etc. to pay on top of being miserable and unhealthy. Look around you! Every time we turn around someone new has cancer, diabetes, open heart surgery etc. Those people are forced to pay big bucks to try to get better or even just stay alive. If we don't want to end up miserable and unhealthy down the road we need to be proactive not reactive!

Supplements-You get what you pay for. If you are buying cheap supplements from a convenience store you are probably throwing your money down the drain. These supplements (vitamins) are so processed that you body isn't actually absorbing any nutrients. You are probably just pooping those bad boys out! If you are going to take supplements you should get them through a whole food supplement such as Standard Process.

Protein/Meal Replacement Drinks-I can't tell you how many people have said to me, "I buy my protein powder in bulk online for ___$". When I look at the ingredients I have no idea what all the crap is that is included with that protein. It isn't quality protein. No wonder it is so cheap! Awesome-you are getting "protein" for dirt cheap-but what else are you polluting your body with along with that?  If you learn one thing from reading this let me share-QUALITY IS BETTER THAN QUANTITY! You get what you pay for. So, just because it is "cheaper" does not make it better.

There are some things that it is okay to go cheap on-toilet paper, shampoo, and other non-name brand products. If you read the back of a jar of pickles and the same ingredients are in Pickle jar A that are in Pickle jar B and Pickle jar B is cheaper then of course buy pickle jar B. It is so important to compare ingredients and 1. understand what the ingredients are and 2. understand why you are paying more for certain better quality ingredients.

I would much rather spend the money up front now buying healthy, organic, and better quality products in order to prevent diseases or bad things from happening then have to spend even more money down the road trying to fix the problems I created by eating crap and not taking care of my body.

But I don't have the money to buy the nicer stuff!!! This is just an excuse to create a roadblock for you on your path to good health. Where can you cut back so that you can afford what is important? Can you cancel Cable T.V.? What about quit going out to eat or buying fast food? Trust me, you will not notice the missing money when you spend it on your health-the only thing you will notice is your body telling you Thank you!

Monday, January 13, 2014

What Can Shakeology Do For You?

What Can Shakeology Do For You?

Shakeology can help you lose weight, reduce cravings, improve digestion and feel great! With over 70 ingredients from rich, nutrient-dense whole-food sources and superfoods from around the world, Shakeology is your Daily Dose of Dense Nutrition.  Find more information about Shakeology here.