Monday, June 20, 2016

What was I doing?

Mindfulness was described in Mindfulness Training Best Meditation Course as follows:

 The moment you pay attention to every little thing that happens to you and just experience these without judgment; means you are being mindful of your present.
We all have a little of what we like to call ADD (attention deficit disorder) and it is seen everyday in everything we do.  This post, for example, was started yesterday and while reading other blogs and facebook I found a bunch of other distractions. Needless to say, I never came back, lost my mojo... in reality I'm not sure I got it back but I'm determined to finish what I start.

One thing I have to do, many of us have to do, is to not schedule quiet times when we know a distraction is likely to happen.  I'm so good at this.  Kids are home from school at 3 pm and it never fails at 2:45 I sit with my water or coffee or wine, whatever and try to enjoy a few minutes of silence out back, knowing quite well that it will not last and then I get irritated that my time of solitude lasted only a few minutes and it was my fault....ugh!!

Same thing happens when I begin to do any chore...most of you will agree with me here. We begin to load the dishwasher and realize that the kitchen towels are dirty so why not take them to the laundry room now, SERIOUSLY? RIGHT THIS SECOND? Yes, now. OK on the way there I realize there's a small pile of laundry on the couch so hey let's get that up to the bedrooms and put away, YES NOW! On the way up to the bedroom I drop a sock, go to pick it up and notice  how filthy the carpet and baseboards are, wow someone should really get that cleaned up... NO, NO, NO... UGH OK doing it NOW, in fact using dropped sock to get it done or I'll forget if I put it off... I'm going to stop there and just say that 2 hours later and what I started is still not finished, WOW, what the heck happened?

I'll tell you what goes through my mind.  I'm afraid that if I put it off I'll forget.  I think it will not take so long, just a quick job (not true, ever), I say well no one else is going to see it and do it so I might as well.

You know what? This is a major workout of walking around, picking up things, putting away things, vacuuming, dusting, scrubbing just to do the dishes.

How does this relate to fitness? Well mental health is important and all too often we allow ourselves to become overwhelmed by chores (especially the ones we never finished due to other distractions), we claim OCD and ADD and then we end up with WINE because it was all too much.  If I was OCD I wouldn't be concerned with finding things along the way while doing other chores because everything would be done on the spot. Yeah, no I do not have OCD.

What I don't like is how I feel at the end of a long day "doing dishes".  Exercise is supposed to make that feeling go away, but as the one who has to plan and execute the fitness classes in happy, motivating, and super energizing format, this plan does not work for me because if it did I would be the most chilled person on the planet, I mean I teach a lot so what gives.  A lot of responsibility to do things right for the hundreds of people I see each week.  So I have to do something for me. No plans, no special music, just for me.

Walk, run, sit in the patio or backyard, by a pool or the ocean with a good book preferably with at least an hour to spare before any distractions, or better yet take the quiet time somewhere else so that I have time to complete the ME process and truly be mindful and thankful.  Running is definitely at the top of the list of activities that give me a sense of calm, takes away the urgency of doing chores and helps me feel centered.  Sitting and resting with a good book or better yet, just the sounds of nature help me to really pay attention to the world around me and refocus on what matters most.  When I take the time for me I am less ADD, more calm and everyone is happier.

Mindfulness is the energy that helps us recognize the conditions of happiness that are already present in our lives. -, Mindful:Taking time for what matters

What do you do to find that peace within you?

Enjoy another beautiful day, beautiful because you are in it not because of the weather.

Stay Well,

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Success story in the making

As a trainer I often hear from people who WANT to lose weight, get in shape, most WANT to target one are over another, you know, spot training. Many expect miracles to happen without putting in the hours of work it takes to make the changes necessary to see that miracle happen.

Mandi started attending my classes and I call her brave and crazy because, unlike many who are getting started, she came and planted her mat and weights right behind me.  Honestly, she would have been on the stage if I let her, ha!! Crazy because she challenged even me many times, she had to bring in her own beach towel to keep the floors dry because this girl worked hard.  I saw her transformation happening and every class she attended, which was just about every class I taught, she challenged herself and those around her...probably the most annoying energy within ear shot because once she knew your name, watch out she was going to challenge you not only in class but she was going to make sure you attended class by calling you out. Actually, everyone needs a Mandi to keep them honest and accountable.

No one can tell her story better, so here is Mandi...

Over the last 5.5 years I've been on a journey to find a Fit and Healthy person. When I started the journey I was over 300lb and I didn't know what exactly I was looking for or how I was going to get there. Little did I know all the places I would be and where this journey would take me. 
To start my journey I was alone, it was just me, and so I found a couch to 5K program and just started moving. Soon I found a friend at work that ran and liked to do 5K races so she started to invite me to come and run the races with her. Before I knew it I was a runner... Well or at least I was out there giving it my all. After 2 years of running (very slowly) I put together a team and ran the Ragnar Relay. It was amazing! I felt like I was finally getting the hang of this "being Fit" thing! Little did I know I had a lot to learn and a lot more to do. While I had been running I still was concerned about what others thought of me and I had issues accepting who I was. 
The next chapter in my life came about 4 months after I ran the Ragnar relay, my work offered me a 4 month rotation over in Afghanistan and I took it. While I thought this would be GREAT for my fitness because what else would I have to do besides work and workout, right.... WRONG!! the food over there is NOT healthy, most people have been over there for years and they don't really worry about their healthy (or unhealthy) lifestyle. So I stopped eating well, I didn't workout much and the weight came back on like CRAZY! You truly don't learn how quickly it comes back until its too little too late. Or at least that's what I thought. 
So after returning from Afghanistan it took me a few months to settle back in. But then I got a gym membership and started taking classes. I thought, what better way to get motivated and back on track then take some classes. I tried all kinds of classes until I found my niche. Bootcamp! That's the class for me, strength, cardio, friends, and most important for me, COMPETITION! I have always been an athlete and competition I found is my best motivator and driving force! While taking bootcamp classes at the gym I have met an AMAZING group of friends who I taken me this rest of this amazing journey! At the gym I meet Terie (the instructor) who ended up introducing me to Laura (Thank you very much for that)! But while taking the classes I have meet some of the most amazing, encouraging and motivating women every! Eileen, little does she know, but she was always the person I tried so hard to catch up to and hoped to one day be able to keep up with. Well I think that day is pretty much here (almost ;-), so thank you Eileen, for always being there in class. Little did you know I was competing with you this whole time ;-) You were great to workout next to and you were one of the biggest motivators to help me get down to where I am now!! Thanks for always looking out for me, motivating and encouraging me to get one more rep in, or push for those last 5 sec, you have no idea how much it meant... 
At this point in my journey I've lost almost 85 lb, I've ran 2 Ragnar Relays, 2 Half marathons, multiple warrior dashes, Spartan races, and so many 10K and 5K's I can't even count them. I got to multiple bootcamps every week (some on my own with my own small army of Fit ladies), I've become a "morning" person (gasp), and I LOVE being part of this #Specialkindofcrazy group! Powerful Fitness has changed my life and my view on fitness!! I've probably lost about 15% or more body fat and I have lost over 85 lb since Jan 2011. This road to a fit and healthy life is ever changing, and will ALWAYS change. 
At this point in my journey I hope to find a way to help other women out there find their motivation, their drive and their desire to get Fit and Healthy! Being Fit and Healthy is different for every single one of us. I have realized and fully accepted that I will NEVER be an 8, at least not if I want to be the happy and fun person that I am now. I always want to be able to enjoy life, and being on a STRICT diet and cutting everything fun and enjoyable out of my life isn't going to do it. So instead I focus on what makes me happy, and finding the balance of Health, Happiness and Living life to its fullest! Powerful Fitness has given me something I didn't even know I was missing and thank you for that!!
With the encouragement of all my instructors and friends I've decided to get my group teaching certification and hopefully soon I might be able to help grow this #specialkindofcrazy army!  
Every single one of you are amazing and capable of so much more than you think you are, you just have to put your mind to and be stronger than any of the fears or doubts you have. No matter how big your goals seem today, take them one step at a time, one small goal after another. You can reach any goal you set, the plan may change along the way, or maybe even the goal might change, but that's the fun part right!! 
See you all out there, as we travel this journey together! 👸

Moral of the story - nothing is ever going to be easy, what you want takes hard work, discipline, dedication, and YOU deserve to give yourself the time and attention to get on a path to living a healthy lifestyle, not for an outfit or party or summer vacation, but for life.

Do you have a story you'd like to share? Hit me up.

Stay Well,

Friday, January 22, 2016

Storm Day Fitness

Stormy days can contribute to a lot of eating and drinking of all the wrong things. It also makes for a great time to binge watch TV. You know it's true even if you decide to play and shovel snow, you can only do that for so long. 

Snow days have the potential for great workouts unless the wind and icy conditions get in the way. I have a few short workouts for you to try this weekend. Do them together with your family, have a competition to see who does more in the time given and while you're working out let the crock pot do the slow cooking for you. 

Ok here's the workout:


Equipment- mat or towel and 2 items heavier than your hands (cans, wine bottles...)

STRENGTH- 3 minutes total with 20 seconds between sets. Do each for one minute.

1. Alternating RIGHT/LEFT reverse Lunge and Shoulder Press Up 

2. Squat and Deltoid Row (Like pulling up your pants)

3. Plié Squat and Bicep Curls, add heel lift for more power in the legs

CARDIO- 2 minutes with 15 second rest. Pick 2 and do for one minute each or do four - 30 seconds each

Jumping Jax
Mountain Climb
High Knee run
Jump rope 
Knee up & press up (lower impact)

CORE- do one for a minute or 2 for 30 sec each

V- sit
Leg lift
Cross cross Abs
V sit toe touch
Plank Knee Pull

10 minutes tops including rest times. Repeat and work harder maybe faster the next time around, then come back and post your experience and results!! 

Here's one of my favorite stormy day recipes - please share one if yours!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Running this town - Poquoson

We recently moved from the DC area and I can say I am finally beginning to feel like I REALLY live here and belong here (at least for the next few years). I had to let go of our town but the amazing people we met are still and forever will be in our hearts.  At some point I had to start focusing on our new hometown...the perils of a military family, to move and meet new people so often that we end up with family all over the world, literally.  It's truly a blessing.

Now we live in the town of Poquoson, VA.  It is a relatively small town with a built in sense of community and recently voted as the number one safest place to live in Virginia. That's pretty cool.  We came here because they have good schools and found safety, community, and very friendly locals.

Now that I live here I find that the best way for me to discover this town and it's people is to run, which prompted me to create a running group on Facebook where I met other runners.  While we may not be able to meet up and run at the same time due to conflicting schedules, it is nice to know others are also out there, discovering the town and finding the areas that are safest for runners, walkers, and bikers.  Safe in the sense of not getting run over by a car.

Probably one of the downfalls is that we have very few sidewalks or walking paths and some just lead to another side street with a dead end.  What that means is that I run in and out of cul-de-sacs a lot, sometimes I find a connecting path to another road, other times I have to turn right back around.

These dead ends, narrow paths, and unpaved street shoulders keep me focused and have forced me to look deeper and discover more.  I could not do any of this if I was driving around town.  Walk, run, or bike... there are endless possibilities of what you might find.

Give it a try. Start a new YOU resolutions to walk, run, or bike in your own hometown. Who knows whom you'll meet or what treasures you'll find.

Stay well,


Sunday, August 2, 2015

Moving Fun & Fitness

I find that moving causes me to gain weight and it is not all stress related, as much as I'd like to say it is. I have the most amazing friends just about everywhere. They lift me up, challenge me, and support me.  Believe me, I do the same for them. It's a balance of caring and being respectful. Always hard to leave them but I know they will always be in my life.

As I prepared to move from Northern Virginia to the Virginia Peninsula, they thought it would be fun to celebrate and create memories and as you might have guessed, these all included eating and drinking. Yes the party was on at every turn. So much fun.

Being their instructor in fitness made it even more challenging as I should be a role model, however, I love a party and food and drinks just as much so the challenges had to come from the fitness side.

No matter what we did that week to celebrate our friendship, our workouts never suffered. We ran, pushed through hundreds of push ups and burpees, went hiking, paddle boarding, kayaking and enjoyed every single one of them. We hiked a few trails, ran many miles and celebrated our time together without missing a beat. It's what we do.

Now that the move is over and the unpacking mostly done it is time to get back on the road, trails, water and keep up with my crazy friends in the north.

Let's do this!!!

Easy August challenge coming soon.

Stay healthy,