National Nutrition Month: Weight Gain Issues

We’re going strong for National Nutrition Month!

Keep your eye on the prize and don’t let a little bit of weight gain get you down. Learn the basics and you’ll succeed every time!


It’s A Throwback: Nutritional Cleansing :)


I’ll be doing another Shakeology Cleanse SOON! Want it? Hit me up. I’ll have special cleanse packages available if you’re just looking to shed some extra weight and get your nutrition in order. Mine will be at the very beginning of March to coincide with my mission trip…cause you know, I like to travel light :)

Shakeology Cleanse Basics:

Meal 1: Drink 1 scoop of your choice Shako in 8 oz water with 1/2 a banana if needed

Meal 2: Drink 1 scoop shako in 8 oz water

Meal 3: 2 cups mixed green salad with 5 oz grilled chicken breast

Meal 4 (optional): 1 scoop Shako in 8 oz water

If you are truly starving during the day, 1st make sure you’re getting enough water and 2nd feel free to have a piece of fruit.

Disclaimer: This cleanse is not to last more than 3 days. Check out the video to see how I modified it for my lifestyle. Feel free to comment on how great my hair looks ;)

Peace, Love and Lunges!



Fun FRIDAY! New Year, NEW YOU!

It’s the Little Things

There is one common theme that I am noticing amongst my clients and fitness fans alike: We ALL LOVE FOOD!!!!

Am I right?

Well, you know what? You SHOULD love food. As a matter of fact, God gave us food so that we can be nourished and enjoy life. Just on a side note though, I’m not so sure God gave us Twizzlers…but I sure do enjoy them :)

I think there is a lot of food confusion going on in the more affluent parts of the world. You read that right, but I’ll explain: if you have enough food to actually cause worry over what you should and shouldn’t eat, you my friend are affluent. We worry over carbs and fats, count calories like devoted mathletes, and even wear devices that tell us how much we move because we honestly don’t know! OK, I have been guilty of ALL.

There is hope for each of us though. It’s a little something called Intuitive Eating. I counsel with this theory and have had raging results for myself and lots of clients. And guess what? We all need it so I’m going to be focusing on this for several blogs. Why? I think we need to bring the enjoyment back to our nourishment. It is the way God intended. think of the people trudging around the desert. God sent manna and I’m sure it was the best tasting, we’re not totally sure what it was, stuff on Earth! Enjoying our nourishment (should we be the ones that are not having to worry over it) is a gift, and it is my intent to bring it back.

Mindless Eating is one of my most flipped through nutrition books. the funny thing is this is not a book of calorie counting or anal retentive meal plans (there is such a thing). it is a book that brings the reality of the situation into light. We are such a get-it-done-yesterday society that we are often just stuffing food in so we can stay awake. We use it to fuel more than it actually does and we often use food for comfort as well. The sadness of this reality is that to an orphan in Ethiopia comfort food is ANY scrap that will reach his belly….

In our culture, we have recently begun to deal with the effects of too-much. Food allergies, intolerances and sensitivities (all different) are beginning to run rampant. Why? Scientists speculate it is because we have never before had such a wide variety of foods available at any time, to anybody day or night. Think about it: you can now get any food delivered straight to your doorstep, no matter the time. Most of us make use of this convenience due to our busy lives, but according to scientists we have “convenienced” ourselves into a serious lack of real health.

I know what your thinking: “I can’t feed a village with MY food and my life won’t slow down anytime soon“. This may be true, but you and I are not meant to leave in an eternal food fight on Earth. We shouldn’t need a third-party to tell us what to eat. So what are we to do? Information is power and I intend to provide you with that. Each week we will discuss a small change that can be made to the diet to help bring about health. The 10 Pound Challenge will cover food in just a bit more detail, but strict meal plans are off-limits. It’s time to take back our right to enjoy our sustenance as it was intended.

So, are you up for the challenge?


Change the mindset to evoke changes

I know the above phrase can make you think of Confucius saying, but stick with me as I have noticed some very powerful changes in just the past couple of months.

There has been quite a bit happening with my physical body here lately. It took me several months after pregnancy to get back into the draw of working out. I tried to beat my body into shape again, thinking I could do it just as I did before. This only caused massive amounts of inflammation and serious discomfort. The more I struggled and fought with my body, the worse it got. So, I figured running a sprint triathlon would be the answer, as it would force my body to train harder (um, yeah, I’m not really the sharpest crayon). This resulted in several weeks of forced time off and some really awful internal issues of which I will spare you the details. This then sent me on the path of cleansing, which only made matters much worse.

So, after weeks of prayer and persistence, I finally gave in to backing it off. You see I had started on a yoga quest of sorts, simply committing to add yoga daily to my other fitness ventures. After all went South, I resolved to at least stick with yoga. I have now been doing yoga for 40 straight days. Now don’t be fooled by what Western minds can lock into yoga, I practice a very vigorous style. I did, however, fall back into old habits of believing I would end up frumpy and flabby if I wasn’t degrading my body into a tight pool of overused muscles. Want the truth on what has changed? Keep reading, I’m saving that for later :)

There are a few things that were brought into light during this more mindful time. Most of them were about the way I had trained myself and others. As I was noticing these things I began to see them across the board and it worries me for the future. You see, I cannot find many health and wellness trainers, meaning trainers who are concerned with integrity. All to often I meet trainers with no integrity, but that is an entirely different post. I’m speaking here of integrity of the body. What if we could let go of the outer body (surface muscles forcing to create movement and carry load) and train the inner body (stabilizing muscles) to make life easier? Here are the things I noticed about my training when I was thinking about competing:

  1. I didn’t really CARE about my class or clients. I began to think everybody should embrace pain. I was told pain meant results so why should they get a break?
  2. If my clients had trouble losing weight, it was their fault. I allowed myself and my training to be boxed in. Life is constantly altering, training should too.
  3. I felt that my “lifestyle eating” of anal retentive food control was normal…it’s not.
  4. I thought anybody who wanted results should adapt to the anal retentive eating plan.
  5. I felt like everybody else just wasn’t trying enough.
  6. AND…I looked at myself in the mirror ALL THE TIME! Looking for flaws, not admiring anything.

This way of life left me feeling more trapped than free. I was usually a little perturbed when I went into class or session and more so when I came out. My break over my body not responding (God will slow me down if I am running full speed down the wrong path) allowed me to take a step back and see what had happened. I had become a pusher of perfectionism. This attitude took a toll on my health (due to imbalance) and my family.

So what’s the big deal with the past 40 days? Well, a lot has changed. My outside stressors have increased, and even though it’s all for great news (homeschooling Deb, kids out of school for Summer, writing assignments and opportunities) it’s still stress. The strange thing is that I have altered my responses so that I become more of a responder to stress instead of a reactor. Points for centering! Also, there have been quite a few outer changes as well. My skin is so healthy it glows (that’s not the Shako, it’s my own concoction of healthy juicing and smoothies) due to the detoxification from the practice. I have NOT lost my temper in quite some time! OK, that’s a big one for me people. I can feel it rise then bring it into balance. I have lost lots of inches and not gotten all flabby! What??? It’s true. I struggled for  a few months to get back into my pre-pre-baby clothes and they are now fitting! And all this time I have not been following the anal retentive meal plan (that’s totally what I’m going to start calling it). So, what have I been doing?

My food is really simple. Really. Simple. I eat what’s in season and what I want, when I want it. I do love smoothies with fresh fruits and all, so I usually have at least one of those per day. I eat fruit whenever I want (gasp! go the anal retentive diet devotees!) and I have enjoyed dinners out and even a few trips to the local frozen yogurt shops. My practice varies from super physical to near restorative based on the day and right now most are 1-2 hours due to teacher training in Core Strength Vinyasa. Debbie and I have just started jogging together 2-3 mornings per week. The best part about that is I have been able to let go of the expectations (time, pace, distance) and just ease into it to be with my daughter. It’s become our “girl time”.

In short, my body, mind, and spirit are happy. I feel as though the shell that was covering me has been broken and God just said “GO.” It’s a wonderful feeling of freedom that I’ve never really experienced. Does it mean I won’t slip back into bad habits? Of course not. I still find myself afraid of a hungry belly. One reason is that I spent the first 2 decades of life on deprivation diets. The second reason is that when following the anal retentive meal plan, one can get quite crabby when the tank starts to near empty. :)

Now, you may wonder how a Christian can embrace yoga so fully (due to yoga’s spiritual influences). I hope you are wondering because I fully plan on exploring that. You see, we are called out into the world to witness. My ministry is not behind the closed doors of church or in my office, it is wherever I am. Ministry is not a vocation, it’s a dedication. I am ready to be used through all of my imperfections, and I am happy to stop judging what I see in the mirror. This alone helps us to judge others less (whole different post!).

So, figure out your balancing point. Know where you feel happy and follow God’s guidance. Happy and comfortable are 2 very different things! Just ask anyone who has mastered the forearm stand :)

Here’s to true health,


P.S. For those wanting to figure their balance point and find a new neutral where the body can become what it was created to become, I have LIVE CLASSES coming in the Fall and sticking around for good :)

Book REVIEW: Think and Grow Thin by Charles D’Angelo

Hey Fit Livers!!!! Still makes me laugh….

OK, so this is my first book review on this blog and I’m pretty pumped. Of course I get pumped about my first cup of coffee every morning too :) If you could only see the scores of books I keep and I hate throwing any away! I have a huge book shelf full of workout books and another packed with diet and cookbooks (one should not be confused with the other). So I figured I’d share the wealth, beginning with THIS hot title.

Think and Grow Thin 

by Charles D’Angelo

Think and Grow Thin is “The revolutionary diet and weight-loss system that will change your life in 88 days!” Which is 2 days shorter than other programs promise! LOL Ok, let’s get serious…

Charles D’Angelo is also known as “The weight loss coach” and you’ve probably heard about him and this new concept book. The “new concept” here is that he tells it like it is and reminds all of us that in order to reach our goals, we must first change our mindset. This really isn’t a new concept. I mean, the Bible tells us in Romans 12:2 about “renewing our minds”. So, why is the health and fitness industry all over this book? Well, it is a breath of fresh air for this particular industry. Charles stresses the importance of a healthy mind frame in order to promote overall good health. There are no gimmicks and NO quick fixes. THAT, is refreshing.

So, does it work?

The book itself is an easy read and I didn’t get bored at all (HUGE PLUS!). Charles tells his own story of battling obesity and coming out a winner with compassion and understanding for those who are where he once was. Also, even though this book contains his story, it’s not all about him. That is a key component. He spaces his journey out through each chapter so that the reader feels as though they are learning right along side him as opposed to being spoken down to. The pace is great and the information throughout the book is nicely placed and explained.

I have yet to meet a workout I don’t like (although I have had some I liked and came to hate…) and the workouts contained in this book are no different. There cardio and strength training elements, both of which we can all benefit from. There are plenty of modifications and if I had complaint about the exercise part it’s this: TOO MUCH TREADMILL! Ok, I got that off my chest. You know I don’t do big gyms and if the price of a treadmill will keep somebody from getting fit, then I believe in ditching the treadmill.

Due to the fact that when a book like this comes out and PROMISES results in a short time frame, then you’d better believe the diet that comes with it is restrictive.This one follows that course. The diet itself is not bad (I hate using that word with food) as it does offer the nutrients you need. My biggest issue is that it does not help with the human tendencies of avoiding the issues we have with food. Like many of my clients have found: you don’t develop an eating disorder by having a healthy respect for food. Keep in mind that I am a nutritionist that deals with patients that have real food issues (although, I hate to break this to you, but if you struggle with weight, you have food issues…). Restricting the diet to eating ONLY what’s on the list can eventually exacerbate these issues. My recommendation? Use the diet as a guideline, get to know your portions, and if you do have a real issue, find a qualified professional to help.

So, overall I really do recommend this book ESPECIALLY if you just can’t seem to get out of your own way when it comes to reaching your weight loss goals. Charles is engaging and the approach is really down to earth. So, what are you waiting for? Head on over to Amazon and pick it up! Oh, and while your there, I have a couple of books that will make a HUGE difference in that food issue ;)

Keep living fit!


Are you ready for another new year?

Quick, in the next 5 seconds tell me what your top new years resolution is…..

According to (yes, this was an actual survey posted) the top resolutions are listed as follows:

While all are worthy resolutions there are a few that have shown up consistently for over a decade now. Lose weight, eat healthier, stop smoking, and get out of debt are true chart toppers within the United States. Now, that may seem like mundane information in light of the new year, but consider the fact that over 60% of our population is either overweight or obese (not to mention the startling statistic that 1 out of every 3 children now fall under the obese category). Before you resign yourself to thinking there is no light at the end of the resolution tunnel, be aware that I am here to shed just such a light.

Now, most can probably agree that all 4 of these overused resolutions usually result in just about the same thing: repeating the pattern. We vow to lose weight only to torture ourselves on the next big diet program and end up putting the weight back on. We promise to eat healthy only to be de-railed by the office candy jar or oh-so-tempting pizza (hey, I’ve been there). We give up smoking only to have the craving hit harder during one of life’s major turmoils, and we dig our way out of one credit card only to run into another scam during the holidays. Then, the following year we make the same resolutions and follow the pattern all over again. It’s like starting over at the back of the same line for the ride and expecting a different outcome.

So, how do I plan on helping with all of this? Well, these 4 particular new year’s resolutions haunted me at one time or another in my life and have been conquered not by means of tedious work and turmoil, but by changing the mind set. Let’s start off with weight loss since it always seems the top of the list. This first point is very important to understand as if it is not completely saturated into your psyche, it will be impossible to move forward.


Read that as many times as you need to get it to truly sink in. You must allow that truth to penetrate the deepest barriers within the brain before you can hope to move forward. What I will offer past this point is just that: HOPE. The next several posts will explain simple ways to change your mindset so that you can reach any goal you set your mind to, weight loss included. Remember, there is no easy button. No weight loss shake or pill will have lasting results. Want the proof? Tell me what the last “diet” you were on provided in the way of weight loss. Now, how much did you keep off? If you were unable to keep off 100% of what you lost then it didn’t work, period.

My approach is nothing new. It’s used by fitness professionals and success stories all over!I simply take what I know beyond the shadow of a doubt to WORK. So, if you’re ready to meet your goals, I’m ready to help guide the way……