Smashed

I smashed it.

Into a million little pieces.

Gone.Done.Goodbye.

There is no place for you here.

I got the biggest hammer I could find, put it in a heavy duty trash bag and

SMASHED IT!

I'm over it. It doesn't serve me. It's data I simply don't need.

118 127 162 157 145 146 148 134 125 173 92 153 100 130

Really, it is just a number, right?!

Yea right!“, is more like it.

If it was really just a number, it wouldn't cause your mood to change in a split second due to anything deemed “unacceptable” by you.

If it was really just a number, it wouldn't put instant thoughts of being “bad” or “good” into your mind, trying to determine your self worth and level of self control.

And, if it was really just a number, we wouldn't be so preoccupied with trying every “diet” and “trick” out there to try and move that number an itty bit lower, if only for a moment. The magazines with the salacious headlines claiming they [FINALLY have the ANSWER to help you lose those last 10 pounds for good] wouldn't sell.

COME ON!

So many of us have lost all logic and reasoning when it comes to the flat, square calculator we stand on {naked-after-going-to-the-bathroom-before-eating} – duh! It holds a prominent place in any bathroom in America and it doesn't like to be messed with – it WILL talk back.

I have decided to get rid of the very thing that has robbed me of my joy one too many times.

Never again is a number going to determine whether or not I'm going to have a good day or a bad day; eat the cookie or survive on coffee; love myself with reckless abandon or scrutinize every imperfection.

Never. Again.

I workout because I like to feel strong and alive, not because the scale told me that I'm fat.

I eat a cookie because I really want to enjoy it with someone I love; better yet, I want to connect with my daughter and laugh while we make our own from scratch using a new recipe I've been dying to try.

I wake up in the morning and love my body for what it does for me. I can do EVERYTHING I want to do. There is nothing holding me back. Truly.

The trendy magazines and fashion designers don't want me to believe that. I'm their prime demographic – they've got bills to pay! Sell! Sell! Sell! They stand in the middle of the room and stomp their feet like they're having a ginormous tantrum. Ad campains, fashion shows, anorexic models, designer this, on-trend that, look like this, do that, YOU too can have it ALL!

WAAAAAAAAAA!

I'm not listening.

Silence.

All I hear are the thoughts in my own head telling me I'm perfect and beautiful and loving and amazing just as I am TODAY!

Whataya know, in about a second, problem solved.

Scale, gone. Self-acceptance, in full effect. Check.

Of course I have goals. I want to be able to rock out in Dee's circuit class and not feel like I'm about to die (in the most amazing way ever) – promise! I want to have plenty of energy to keep up with Ella and whatever else life throws my way. I want to prevent disease and do the things I know will help me to LIVE a more productive life because I FEEL GOOD from the inside out.

I want to set a good example. Not only for Ella, but for the other women that I encounter that think they aren't worth it today, but 10 pounds from today. Why do we get together and complain about our thighs and hips? WHY do we do this???

I highly doubt I will look back on my life and wish I loved myself less. I do believe I will look back and realize how fabulous I really was. Why not realize that right now and go with it?

I am.

I am committed to not engaging in disparaging body talk with myself or anyone else.

I am committed to banishing the scale from my life FOREVER.

I am committed to accepting my body as God intended – who am I to question His creation?

I was given THIS BODY for a reason, and you were given YOUR BODY for a reason. If you want to make some lifestyle changes that will help you to rock through your day and zip up your jeans without lying down, GO FOR IT!

My only suggestion is this: instead of starting with a number, start with loving yourself just a little bit more today than you did yesterday.

It just might stick.

Do what you do, love YOU for YOU!

xoxo

p.s. This post was inspired by the woman that helped to change my outlook on food and body image forver. You can check in with her here. Thanks Barb 😉

 

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My Girl DEE!

Hello my lovelies.  I hope your weekend was fabulous!  I had a great weekend, thanks in part, to

MY GIRL DEE!

Let me take you back to last Thursday.  I was having a great day until someone decided to

RAIN ON MY PARADE.

Ug.  Seriously, the nerve of some people.  I was going along happily in my “mommy” and “fitness angel” world.  Then –

BOOM!  Thunder, lightening, the works.  I went to bed that night feeling disappointed, sad, hurt, and not too motivated to follow-through with my plan to go yoga the next day.  I mean really, why do yoga when you can SULK?

Ok, did I really just say that??  Wow.

Thank GOD for DEE!!

Friday morning shows up as it always does.  I woke up with puffy eyes and a still-broken heart.  On top of that, Ella was not in a bouncy mood and ended up spilling a FULL GLASS of juice on the couch leaving EVERYTHING sticky.  Yes, loads of fun…

BUT, we made it through.  I dropped her off at school ON TIME (miracle) and headed home.  I had planned to text Dee saying I wasn’t going to make it.

But…I didn’t.

I stopped and asked myself what would be in

MY BEST INTEREST?

Yoga is good for the mind AND body…and, Dee, well, she’s kind of a big deal.  Why would I deny myself an hour with a total pro?  Who holds the power over your feelings?

YOU DO!

I wasn’t in the mood for a sugary-sweet-let’s-all-hold-hands-and-sing-kumbaya yoga class.  I didn’t want to learn a new language, solve the world’s problems, or see how many ways I could contort my body (even though I AM very flexible).

I wanted to feel GOOD from the inside out, work hard, smile only if I really felt like it, and, most importantly, lift my mood by working my body.

I wanted something REAL.

I can assure you that it doesn’t get any more real than fabulous DEE!  She is one of the gems I’ve been lucky to find in the group fitness industry.  And, THE FIRM, the place you go to catch her rockin’ classes, is kind of like being transported to another planet – in a super COOL way.  There is a sign outside the yoga studio door that actually instructs people to keep their clothes on.  I know, it’s an awesome crowd.

With all this in mind, I decided to stay strong and get in my car and drive a quick 17 minutes to THE FIRM.  I easily found a parking spot and went inside.  I was greeted by Diva Doug (which always makes me happy – he’s adorable!) and made my way up to the white bright yoga studio.

I see Dee and I smile.  I’m already feeling better and I haven’t even moved one itty bitty muscle.  Its true, she has that effect on people.

I find a spot, roll out my mat and grab some weights – I get ready to WORK!

Class is intense.  As my friend Cara pointed out, it’s NO JOKE.  Only the strong survive (well, kind of…you just have to TRY…hard!)  Dee is fully aware of the intensity of her classes and she doesn’t apologize for it.  She knows she is making you STRONGER!  That’s why we go….right?!

I know, I know, there are a million group fitness classes out there that are really fun, and you might FEEL really good because you could do it in your sleep, but does your body actually CHANGE?

The answer is, no.

If you look around at the people in those classes, you don’t see bodies change.

That is because they do THE SAME THING every week.  It’s predictable.  Yes, a little predictability is a good thing.  It might be what YOU want or need.

But for me, right now, I am not interested in being predictable and comfortable.  I don’t want to know what’s coming next.  I want to get a little uncomfortable.  I want to know what I can do, as a 34 ½ year old wife, mother, teacher, friend, sister, daughter, WOMAN.  How strong am I?

This is why I smile when I see Dee.  I know that for the next 60 minutes I have a super smart fitness professional guiding me and encouraging me to do more today than I did yesterday.  I’m not in control, and I’m more than ok with that.  I trust that if I COMMIT to giving 110%, I will feel stronger.

And I do.

I wasn’t able to do every position flawlessly.  I lost my balance, took a break when I needed it, and got tired.  But I was there, giving it my all, doing my best.

The flow of the class kept me going; Dee’s strength inspired me.

In one hour all of the chaos from the night before was lifted.  The stress of the morning disappeared.  I reconnected with myself by working hard, and then a little harder.

It’s kind of amazing how your mind can follow your body if you let it.

As you begin your week, I encourage you to stay strong and [GO] for whatever it is.  Just go.  Getting there is half the battle.  Let the Dee in your life take care of the rest.

Peace and love xoxo


Let The Music Play

TGIF ya’all!

I thought I’d share some of the songs that have been powering me through

WORKOUTS

and

LIFE

this week.

Enjoy and have a great weekend!

1. “Don’t Hold Your Breath” Nicole Scherzinger (MY FAVORITE!!!!)
2. “Roc Me Out” Rihanna
3. “No One” Alicia Keys
4. “Bizarre Love Triangle” (DJ Analyzer) Cary August
5. “Give Me Everything” DJ Shocker
6. “Let the Music Play” (David Delano) Oakenfold and Shannon
7. “Beautiful Life” (Jump Mix Edit) Jan Van Bass – 10
8. “E.T. Feels Starry Eyed” Kap Slap (free download!)
9. “I Wanna Go” Nicki Bliss (free download!)
10. “How Will I Know” Monkey Business & Danny Suko
11. “Best of You” (Hydraulic Vs E-Fact Remix) Foo Fighters (free download!)
12. “Rolling Sassy Against Me” Marc Johnce 

Side Note:  L.O.V.E. this one from Marc Johnce!!!!
13. “Lonely Boy” The Black Keys
14. “Big Girls Don’t Cry (Personal) Remix Fergie
15. “Mommy Complex” Peaches
*You can Google any of the song titles to find them – some are on itunes – many can be found for FREE!

Peace and Love xoxo


Somedays You Just Gotta

We are all pulled in a million directions each day. As a mom, I always feel like I should be or want to be in

five million places at once!

Yesterday was one of those days – I dropped Ella off at school and BAM! the countdown begins.

I have 6 precious hours to:

BE PRODUCTIVE!

DO LAUNDRY!

PAY BILLS!

ORGANIZE! COOK! CLEAN!

Blah, Blah, Blah.

I could have easily filled my time with chores…but I also wanted to pick up a few things at the mall that contribute to me feeling GOOD about myself (i.e. Peter Thomas Roth bronzer, cute jammies, and Caudalie Beauty Elixer), register for a run/bike event and go to yoga to breathe and renew.

So, the match-up was this:

Lady of the House vs. Lady of the Mall and the Mat

I chose Lady of the Mall/Mat.

YEA!!!!!!!

Sometimes you just gotta pick one, and go with it.

YOU CAN’T DO EVERYTHING!

And if you try, you will fail. A cycle of misery and guilt will ensue and you’ll end up getting less done and you’ll be less productive, not to mention you won’t FEEL good.

Ug, who needs that?

Laundry, bills, cooking and cleaning will always be there.

Someone will always need you.

What about YOU? YOU need YOU too!

So many people (including me) put off the things that would make them feel complete because something else always gets moved to the top of the list.

The top of my list rotates. Yesterday, a trip to the mall and the gym won. Today, I’ll be taking Ella to dance, cleaning, doing laundry, planning meals and grocery shopping.

Balance is such a good thing.

Be kind to you. Do that thing that you’ve been putting off – whatever it is.

Sometimes, you just gotta:

*run *see a movie *work *sip coffee *dance *eat *enjoy *GET THROUGH IT

…whatever it is, GO! Do it!

The minute you start to feel stress about the things that are not getting done,

STOP!

It’s ok. It will get done. Trust me.

My laundry was waiting for me when I got home, as was a dinner to prepare, a kid to bathe and loads of putting away and tidying up to do.

The GREAT thing is, as I settled in to bed last night, I was so glad that I took the time to work hard in yoga and focus on strengthening my own practice for one hour.

The energy I received from that will definitely fuel me to be a better mama and domestic diva today.

Sometimes, you just gotta.

Peace and love ya’all xo


Pick Me Up!!

It’s getting to be about that time…the afternoon energy dive is nearing…I can feel it! I don’t care how hard you work to regulate blood sugar, for some of us, our days drive us to exhaustion at some point in the afternoon.

For me, it’s usually around 2pm.

Whataya know…

it’s almost time!

But hang on, I have the BEST PICK ME UP!

Enter, my trifecta of energy that I consume twice daily (one in the morning, 10ish, and one in the afternoon, 2ish). I seriously love this stuff.

HOW:

Mix 32 oz water, 1-2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar and your favorite beverage (low calorie preferred) – I like eboost, Propel or Slimgenics “Thermoboost”.

I know, I know, I may have lost you at the “favorite beverage” part. Here’s the thing, a SMALL AMOUNT of one of those zero calorie packets is not going to hurt you.

I believe in balance.

My diet is not full of artificial ANYTHING. For ME, the benefits outweigh any negative effects of the little packet.

In case you are wondering, the MAJOR benefit I have noticed is my skin. It’s seriously insane how clear and lovely it is from drinking the vinegar. Not to mention I feel more balanced, hydrated and energized!

Oh, and the taste is great – with the 32 oz of water and flavored packet I hardly know its in there.

It doesn’t get much easier than that my friends.

I’m off to teach a little kickboxing tonight – quite certain I’ll have plenty of energy to kick just the right amount of booty xx

Drink up and rock on! ENERGIZE! xo


Ending Well

First off, welcome back Fitness Angel readers. I miss the process of WRITING
and the
CREATIVITY
required. I also miss
SHARING
my experiences related to all things health and wellness, so…

HERE I AM!

If you are responsible for feeding anyone (yourself included) there is most likely a question that can ignite a plethora of thoughts that may include:

“I have no idea.”

“I don’t have the energy.”

“I need something NOW!”

“I already ruined my diet, screw dinner.”

If you are the FEEDER, you already know what the question is. If you are the FEEDEE, you are very lucky – be sure to kiss the hand that fed you today prior to shutting your sweet little eyes tonight, ok?

The question at hand is……..

WHAT’S FOR DINNER?

ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!

OK, so here’s the deal. Dinner happens to be my favorite meal of the day. I force breakfast . Lunch is usually quick and easy and simply serves a purpose…get the job done.

But dinner….

I love dinner because I always spend it with those I love.

However….

I am usually exhausted by the time dinner arrives and sometimes it is tough to get motivated to cook.

Here’s the other thing….

It’s EXTRA hard to get motivated to COOK when its just me and Miss Ella (age 5). It sometimes seems like a big hassle to PREPARE a REAL meal for JUST US?!?!

I give myself props though…9 times out of 10 I cook and prepare real food. It gives me energy and I feel so much better. Plus, the lesson Ella receives simply from WATCHING is undeniable.

Tonight, I share the EASIEST recipe on the planet – sweet and spicy salmon.

YUM!

HERE’S HOW:
Sweet and Spicy Salmon

-rinse and dry 1 pound of salmon, place in baking dish skin side down
-spray the salmon with cooking spray or a light coating of your favorite cooking oil
-rub 1 tablespoon of brown sugar onto the top of the salmon
-sprinkle chili powder on top of the brown sugar (approx. 1 teaspoon)

it will look like this:

-bake in a 425 degree oven for 15-20 minutes, just until the fish flakes apart

Voila!

Happy GIRL!

Ella requested cooked carrots (I always have carrots on hand) and the bread was homemade from a few days ago. It was a super yummy end to the day.

************************************************************************************************

As a side note, I also have days where, in my mind, I’ve “ruined” eating for the day because cake was served after lunch or an extra latte was had in the afternoon. Sometimes you feel “off track” by the time dinner arrives and you might be tempted to…
….throw in the towel….

DON’T!

You CAN get it together at the end of the day regardless of what the previous 10 hours have held.

~ PREPARE a nutritionally dense meal that you FEEL GOOD about

~DRINK the magic apple cider vinegar drink *see next post*
(instant pick-me-up and AWESOME detoxifier)

~GIVE yourself a break and a little positive self talk

A new opportunity for ENERGY and HEALTH

begins

NOW!


Something New…

I went to bed last night with that icky, creepy feeling that only shows up when really crazy stuff happens in the universe. It had been a gloomy day already, and Sunday nights in general tend to cause me more anxiety than any other night. I’m watching “The Apprentice” while feeling myself lose brain cells by the second; I was trying to get my mind off of life for a minute. The news ticker starts scrolling, stating THE PRESIDENT is going to make a VERY IMPORTANT announcement about NATIONAL SECURITY!

HUH?!

That’s a little weird…on a Sunday night at 10pm EST?

What the bleep is going on?!

More anxiety…flashes of my family and how lucky we are race through my mind. I begin pleading with God…please don’t let anything bad happen to all of the amazing people in this awesome (truly) world we live in.

Fast forward: we all know what went down. Justice was served, although death never feels 100% like “justice” to me. Whatever the case, it was yet another gloomy day here in Minneapolis and I was on the edge.

It’s May 2!

COME ON! CAN’T WE GET A BREAK!?

In light of the gloom outside and the gloom in my head, I decided to forego all I needed to do and head to the gym to clear my mind and get a much needed endorphin boost. It seemed like the perfect day to step outside all that is comfortable to me and…

try something new!

Out bodies love it when we get out of our comfort zone. Our muscles have memories; they get used to the love of a yummy yoga class or the pain of a crazy cardio & strength combo.

When it comes to workouts, variety = change! It’s also really good for your mind to stay fresh and do things that make you feel uncomfortable, awkward, and maybe even clumsy.

Enter ZUMBA!

You’ve probably seen the infomercials and you’ve probably spoken with at least one person that is a die hard fan. People seem to really like their ZUMBA classes!

I’ve always gravitated to the high impact aerobic route – I enjoy a good series of high kicks and lots of jumping jacks set to some pumping techno music. This is my comfort zone and also my happy place…AND, it’s also the place that I need to take a break from sometimes.. Too much of this can make me feel tired, cranky, and depleted. i.e. The need for VARIETY!

Here is what I love about ZUMBA: it feels so good to your body! It’s more fluid than many forms of dance AND it’s low impact and fun! To shake your hips, stomp your feet and rock to the lovely Latin beat is really a sweet escape.

Today I had the joy of taking class from a true Latin dance legend! Meet, Leslie Fhima.

Yes, she is a totally rockin’ ZUMBA instructor. We are on the same group fitness team at LifeTime Fitness, St. Louis Park. I decided to look in the windows of my own little corner of the world to see if I might learn something, experience my body moving in a new way, and get a little uncomfortable in the process – we all know that’s when the growth happens and the learning begins.

I am discovering that the more I step outside of what I am scheduled to do and teach, the more I grow as an instructor. I don’t teach any type of dance format, but I can assure you that I was completely inspired by Leslie today. I hope to infuse a little of her flair (in my own way) into some of the cardio combos I teach this week.

I can see that ZUMBA is a format that you grow with. You will build a library of steps and combos as you take class and practice. Eventually, it will feel natural to weave them together. Today, it felt a little awkward and I didn’t like how I looked doing some of the moves. BUT, I stuck with it and let go of the negative thoughts racing through my head. I embraced the fact that I was doing something positive and fun, just because.

Leslie is a terrific ZUMBA instructor. Her music was fantastic and I really loved her choreography. She doesn’t use a microphone, which I am usually not a fan of, but I have to admit that it was nice not to have someone shouting at me for an hour.

Here are my recommendations to anyone wanting to try this format:

1. Try it! It can be found in major cities and small towns all over the US. And, you can even do it in your living room (see below, Exhibit A)

2. Don’t get discouraged. This type of class consists of choreography that could take a few times to flow for you. Stick with it and DON’T GIVE UP!

3. Have fun :). Most importantly, ZUMBA has the potential to leave you feeling like you just experienced a rockin Latin dance party. Let yourself go and enjoy it – if you are not able to let go, you absolutely will not enjoy ZUMBA.

Don’t worry about what anyone else is doing or how you look.

It. Doesn’t. Matter.

I promise!

I had my own little dance party in my living room after class.

The moral of the story is this: there will be cloudy days, horrific world events, loss, fear, and anxiety in our lives. That is simply a law of nature.

The determining factor in your happiness is how YOU CHOOSE to handle it.

Do you let things get to you?

-or-

Do you step outside your comfy, cozy world, shake a little booty and dance to your own beat?

I hope I always choose dancing 🙂

Peace, love, jumping jacks and latin rhythm…xo


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