Green Energy Smoothie

I told you I’d be posting more recipes.

You know I love the green smoothies.  But I got to say when I first was drinking green smoothies, I couldn’t figure out the right balance to help me feel full after.  So I played around and came up with my “energy” smoothie.

Here’s what you need:

  • 1/2 c water
  • handful of greens (I use spinach or kale)
  • 1/4 c oats
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter (you can use any nut butter)
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 apple
  • handful of frozen pineapple chunks
  • 1/2 squeezed lemon
  • some ice (I like mine cold)

Mix all ingredients together in a blender.  You might want to split the ingredients and do 2 or more blends to make sure it all gets in there.  Whatever works for you.  Pour and enjoy!

Let me know what you think.  And if you have a favorite green smoothie, please share!  I want to start mixing it up.

Till next time….sparkle on!

Be That Girl

I heard a quote this week, that hit me hard.  Don’t you love when that happens.  It went something like this. “If you feel weak, you are relaying on your own strength.”   Did you get that…seriously read it again and take it in.  I’ll wait!

Crazy right?!!!

This quote spoke to me and if you know me you know why.  I keep it all in until I explode.  I’ve gotten better over the years but I still hold lots in.  Since having my second child and having my “awakening” (read previous post for more on that), I’ve come to realize sometimes you need others to help you be strong.

Most recently, I was having a conversation with my husband about my struggles.  I basically said, “I’m tired of being like this.  I just want to be happy, be present with him and the kids, to love myself, to be excited and full of energy, etc.”

The next morning, I woke up thinking about that conversation and asked myself, why am I waiting to be that girl? Why can’t I be her now?

So just like that I made a decision to change. I was ready to live life, embrace the journey and know that I rock!

Decision made, now what?

Each morning I wake up to workout and I tell myself, it’s time to be that girl.  What would she do to be where I want to be now?  And I do it!   So far, I’ve increased my weights in my workouts, played more with my kids in the morning and been super friendly to people I pass on the street (I mean a smile or hello) and I enjoy every sip of my ice coffee.  It’s the little things!

I ask the same question throughout the day and I have to say it’s working.  I feel so much better about myself.  I’m happier, I smile more, I feel lighter and I’m having more fun.

Back to the quote…letting my husband in to my emotions, allowing him to listen and to provide feedback, gave me the strength I needed to be that girl.  I wasn’t carry all the weight myself…now someone else had heard and understand and it was lifted.

Life is not perfect, there are ups and downs…that will not change.  I have an amazing life and it’s up to me to keep it amazing.

So stop waiting and start doing…you can be THAT girl too!

Till next time…sparkle on!

Recipe: Protein Pancakes

What do you think of when you think of eating healthy?

Boring, tasteless food?

It’s not true!  Eating healthy can be delicious and tasty!

Along with sharing my fitness journey and self love journey, I’m going to share tons of recipes here that follow my 3 rules.

Rule #1:  SIMPLE

Rule #2:  YUMMY

Rule #3:  THE FAM WILL LIKE

So let’s start with protein pancakes!  Who doesn’t love a good pancake?

Here’s what you need for 1 serving (I double this recipe up if I want to have pancakes for the week.  They last for 5 days in the fridge in a Tupperware container):

  • 1 banana
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 c water
  • 1/2 c oats
  • 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder
  • tons of cinnamon (I usually just coat the top of all ingredients with it)
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/4 c apple sauce
  • splash of vanilla extract

Put all ingredients in blender and blend till smooth.  Cook like pancakes and then top with whatever you like.

I top mine with a little organic real maple syrup, peanut butter and fruit.

Let me know what you think.

Till next time…sparkle on!

Meditation: Make it Your Own

Have you meditated?  Like the one where you close your eyes and are supposed to calm your mind of brain activity?

For 2016, one of my goals was to meditate daily.  After having my second son, as mentioned in previous post I had a break down (aka. awakening).  I was looking for something to help with the anxiety, depression and stress so I decided it was time to try this meditation thing.

I was hesitant to say the least.  I mean how could my brain calm down…I had like a million things going on in there….I need to lose this weight, am I good mom, am I doing okay at work, what about my husband and on and on.

Clearly I needed to calm it down with all that negative self talk.  So, I made a commitment to try it for a week and to do 2 minutes a day.  I figured 2 minutes would be a piece of cake!

WRONG!

I literally was counting the seconds down and saying to myself, this is ridiculous, I can’t even be still for 2 minutes.

But I was not giving up.  I knew in my soul I needed this to move into a better version of myself.  So each day got a little better and I was able to add a minute here and there and now I’m up to 10 minutes a day!

What I’ve noticed from doing 10 minutes of meditation daily is it seriously helps me with mindset and keeps me balanced.  Some days better than others.  But now I actually enjoy doing it…it’s like a little moment for me and my thoughts.

Many of my customers have asked me about meditation and what I do in particular so I thought I’d share here.  Remember my main principle is SIMPLE, so you’ll see my daily practice is just that.

My meditation practice:

  • I meditate after my morning workout before the rest of the family is up (except when my husband travels because then I’m just trying to beat the clock on when the baby wakes)
  • I DO NOT have any special set up.  I use my workout space, a yoga mat and my bright overhead light
  • I set my iPhone alarm for 10 minutes, sometimes less depending on my mood or amount of time I have (remember I started with 2 minutes and worked my way up so do what is best for you)
  • Once in awhile I’ll do a guided meditations, but I really like the quite since I don’t get that often with a toddler and baby.  YouTube has a ton you can search
  • I lay down on my back on my yoga mat with eyes closed
  • I start by taking a big breath in and saying OM to myself and then exhaling saying AH to myself.  I do this 3-5x till my mind is still
  • Then I say affirmations, my vision and lay in silence for a bit
  • Right before the time is up or when the buzzer goes off I set my intentions for the day
  • If my mind wonders, I let it and then go back to my breath with the OM and AH

That’s it!  Simple!

Now your turn…try it and let me know how it goes or any questions you have!

Till next time…sparkle on!

Why Are YOU Holding Back?

Have you ever thought about something you wanted to do and just kept putting it off?

That’s how I was with yoga.

I have been constantly thinking about taking a Vinyasa yoga class.  I was craving the movement, the mindfulness, and the calmness. But, I just kept putting it off because I couldn’t find a studio that was in my town that worked for me.  It was an excuse!

As I’ve mentioned in several posts prior, after having my second son, an awakening or break down happened to me.  It started during the pregnancy but I just brushed it off thinking it was the hormones, which I’m sure it was.  After the birth of my son, I did the same thing, just brushed it off due to hormones.

But 9 months later, it’s hard to keep brushing it off.  It’s been a struggle to lose the baby weight which is huge for me as a coach and as a person with body images (more on that in later posts I’m sure).  That topped with feeling worthless, alone, depressed just added to knowing something was not right.

I turned to self-development and self-love work.  I saw a therapist for a bit and felt good enough to stop, but I’ve recently booked another appointment.  I actually booked it after posting Life is not a Highlight Wheel.

The self-development and self-love have been eye-opening! To say I’m back to myself is a lie and honestly, I don’t think I’ll ever be back there.  That’s not a bad thing, in fact it’s a great thing…I think I’ll be better.

So how does this back story have anything to do with yoga?

During this process of getting back to feeling more like me, I’ve realized the things I most resist are those I need most in my life.

Meditation being one (blog post coming soon on this one….HUGE awaking here).

Writing being another.

And now yoga.

Both meditation and writing, I kept telling myself I didn’t have time.  I was too tired at night or I didn’t have enough time in the morning since that was my time to get my workouts in.

Once I realized this was a bunch of bull and just did it, I realized how nuts I was not to be doing these things.  Meditation has provided me with clarity, balanced, and mindfulness.

Writing…wow this one is bigger than I could have ever thought.  It started with just taking 5 minutes to write whatever was on my mind plus what I was grateful for in a journal to creating this blog.

Writing has energized me and given me joy.  It has shown me I am actually creative, something I didn’t think I had in me.

Now yoga, once I committed to trying a yoga class, the experience was life changing.  Yes, it was that amazing.  In fact I call it magically and I NEVER use that word.

For my first class, I went in with expectations that the room would be packed with beautiful yogis doing crazy poses.  The room was definitely packed, but there were all different types of people at all different levels.  Some were doing crazy headstands while others enjoyed child’s pose.

What I did not expect is that once the class began, I felt for the most part like it was just me and the voice of the yoga teacher.

The movement was exactly what my body needed.  I was sweating and it felt like a great workout and a massage at the same time.  When we went into meditation, my mind was quite and clear.  When I stood to leave, I felt a lightness and calmness I hadn’t felt EVER.

It was like a runners high.  I felt so relaxed, so ready for whatever the day brought and so rejuvenated.  So needless to say, I bought a pass and now am going one to two times a week.

Whatever you are holding yourself back from doing, DO IT!  It most likely is what you need.  I was listening to a podcast with Elizabeth Gilbert and she mentioned following your curiosity.  I believe this is similar…if you are curious follow that, it’s a clue to bigger things!

Till next time…sparkle on!

Life is not a highlight wheel

A little about me…I’m a mom of two boys (an almost 4-year-old and a 9 months).  Both boys have severe food allergies.  I work in corporate America.  My commute takes about 2 hours round trip. I live in the burbs.  My husband is amazing and travels a lot for work.  I’m trying to lose this stubborn baby weight because I refuse to believe in settling.  I could go on and on but I’m not writing a book, I’m writing a blog:) 

I wanted to open up with the first paragraph because I’m so use to defending my feelings or emotions in any given situation, it only felt natural to start there.

Life is hard.

Being a mom is hard.

Perfection is over rated.

When did beating ourselves up become okay.

WHY?

This week was rough, they always are when my husband travels.

One night, my youngest decided waking up at 3 am and not going back down until close to 5am would be fantastic.

As you can image, I did everything to settle him down.  I rocked him, put the sound machine on, changed his diaper, let him cry it out till I got nervous he’d wake my older son up.  And in those moments I got angry with a 9 month old.

And then the beat down began…on myself.  Yes it was wrong to get angry with him..he’s a baby.

But I took it to a whole new level of crazy on the car ride into work.  It began with me not being a good mom, which is crap.  Then how I can’t do this mom thing right without my husband, which turned into I’m independent why do I need him.  And on and on it went.

Does this sound familiar?

By the time I got to work, I was officially in a bad mood and shocked I wasn’t crying hysterically after that beat down.   Don’t worry the water works happened in a conference room when I recapped it all to my husband on the phone.

I wrote about this in my mom Facebook group and the amount of support was amazing.  But it got me thinking, all these women were relating to me and telling me they too have experienced this.

So why the hell is no one else talking about this stuff? Why do we feel the need to have our lives on a highlight wheel?  When did we lose being real?  What’s so bad about being imperfect?

It was after taking time to myself that I decided to commit to being real, to stop putting ridiculous pressures on myself and surrender to life and all its quirks.

It’s exhausting trying to keep up and be the best at everything.  It’s exhausting to expect we can.

Life is hard, BUT it is amazing that we get to live this life the way we want.

Being a mom is hard, BUT to see my children each night smiling and laughing lights up my heart and I wouldn’t change it.

I’m not perfect and I’m tired of trying.  This is me.  I’m real, I’m emotional.  I cry at the drop of a hat.  I love fashion, fitness, coffee, sparkles and going to get an amazing mani/pedi.

I will not beat myself up anymore.  Instead I will acknowledge what happened and tell myself I am amazing and I will learn from this lesson.  I know the journey will be difficult but I’m ready for the challenge because I deserve better.  I deserve self-love!

Till next time…sparkle on!!!!

 

 

Small Changes= Big Results Part 3

Here we are at the final change I made in May.  To recap, I made two other changes, both related to diet by adding lemon water daily and green smoothies a few times a week.  And this one is not related to food, instead its finding the right workout program!

If you read my “About” page you know I love to workout.  It’s who I am…if I don’t work out I feel lost.  So you can image my frustration when I got no results.  I mean zero results doing an intense program that seemed to work for everyone else.

I literally thought the program was going to melt all the baby weight off. What I realized is the program was too intense for me at that time.  Of course it took me forever to realize that.

I had to take a hard look at myself and ask, what was I capable of?  What did I want to do to help me with getting this baby weight off?

And then I thought hybrid.  Why have one program, when I can make it my own?…aha moment #1. 

I knew I wanted a mix of weights, cardio and some type of yoga.  After having baby #1, I got the BEST RESULTS with Body Beast.  So, I knew that had to be in my workout plan.  Weights…check!

For cardio, I wanted something fun, quick and not crazy intense with jumping.  The clear winner was Turbo Fire.  I committed to only doing the Low HIITs.  Quick, effective and fun!  Cardio…check!

I had been craving yoga for months but to chicken to actually go to a class (I have gone since and I’ll be doing another blog post on that soon).   I had PiYo and knew that would give me the flexibility and strength I was looking for, so that rounded the hybrid out.

Next, I made a calendar to workout 6 days a week for 30 days.  Aha moment #2 (and actually I think I had this for each change I made), shorter time periods work best for me.  If a program said it was 90 days, I can only look at 30 days or I get overwhelmed.

As with the lemon water and green smoothies, I allowed myself flexibility.  Aha moment #3, being ridge isn’t going to get you results if life happens…you need some flexibility.   I knew if I wasn’t feeling a workout, I could move things around to make it work for me.

Aha moment #4…it’s okay to think outside the box on the workout programs.  I know they are intended to give best results when you do it the way it’s laid out but sometimes that doesn’t work for everyone.

I didn’t lose any weight, but I have noticed my definition is coming back! Aha moment #5….tighter is sometimes better than what the scale says.

I felt good doing these workouts.  Stronger, fitter and tighter.  Aha moment #6…feeling good is what it’s all about….why do something if you don’t feel good?

Overall, this challenge was what I needed.  I needed small changes to get me to see things clearly and get bigger results emotionally.  It helped me to really listen to my body.  To know what felt good for my body, inside and out.

What amazed me is these tiny changes, really did sprinkle down into other areas of my life.  I kept asking myself, does this feel good to me?  If it did, I did it.  If it didn’t, I looked at it and figured out why and how to change it.

Funny how doing small things shifts the mindset.

Question:  This challenge got my creativity flowing and I’m in the process of developing a program to help you shift your mindset to get to your goals like I did in this challenge.

Would you be interested?  If so, make sure to sign up for my newsletter by clicking here to find when I’m launching it!  

Till next time…sparkle on!

 

Small Changes= Big Results Part 2

I wanted to get this posted earlier but life happens.  So, I’m posting now.  I know we are just getting started but I truly hope these blogs inspire you on your journey and motivate you to mix things up!

To recap, my last blog post talked about lemon water.  And now this blog post will talk about green smoothies!  Yep, another diet change…this is where I am struggling the most, so I knew my focus had to be on what was going into my body.

Like lemon water, there is a ton out there about the benefits of green smoothies.  It was one of those things, I kept saying, oh I should make a green smoothie.  And then it didn’t happen.  My shift came when I saw a green smoothie place popped up across the street from where I work ..then I knew it was time to see what this was all about.

I still had a problem…when would I fit this into my daily diet?

Finally, I said screw it and added it to my May challenge.

So it began…

For me to do this for 30 days, I knew I had to decided to having 3-4 smoothies a week.  One every day was overwhelming for me.  Then I had to figure out a recipe, which I found and is below:

  • 1 cup of water
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • handful of spinach
  • 1 cup of cut up frozen pineapple chunks

This recipe was good and as the month went on, I got more creative.  I’d add whatever fruit I had on hand, change the spinach to kale, add oats, chai seeds or flex seed, and used almond milk or Kefir for the liquid.  It became fun to think of new creations.

Aha moment #1.  You can make healthy fun! Not just with being creative with what was in the smoothie but in drinking it too.  I drank out of a straw whenever I had a smoothie.  Then I bought a cute milk bottle that is just used for my smoothies.   #itsthelittlethings

I ended up drinking my green smoothing for my mid-afternoon snack.   I noticed I wasn’t as hungry as I normally was before dinner time since these smoothies were filling….aha moment #2.  

Nothing magical happened here as a result of adding green smoothies.  But I felt healthier, which is part of my bigger goal to be healthy from the inside out.

I’m still having green smoothies 2-3x a week.  I particularly like having these on the weekends, when it’s crazier than normal.

I have been having on for lunch on the weekend and adding peanut butter and oats.  Not only does it give me my veggies and fruits I need but it fills me up and gives me the energy I need to keep up with a toddler and baby! .

I’ll make sure to share recipes here soon, so make sure to check back often!

Till next time….sparkle on!

 

 

 

Small changes = Big Results Part 1

As mentioned in my first blog post, I have been changing things up to lose the baby weight after baby #2, but more importantly to find balance and love myself for where I am right now!

The next few blog post break down the small, simple changes I made for the month of May.  I share what I did, the aha moments that apply to life, and the impact these changes have had on my fitness and self love journey.

So let’s begin…

The first change was adding one glass of lemon water a day to my life.

Yep, lemon water…that’s it.  Easy peasy!

It actually started as adding one detox water, which included juice of 1/2 lemon, 1 tsp apple cider vinegar, and a pinch of cayenne pepper.  But after 2 weeks, I felt like my enamel on my teeth was softening so I eliminated all the ingredients except lemon and water.

Aha moment #1:  I can change things up when it’s not working for me! I can’t tell you how many times I thought I had to see things through because that was the plan and being miserable doing it.  Anyone relate?

A few things to note:

There is a TON of research on lemon water and I threw that out the window.

I did NOT have lemon water time specific.

I did NOT care about the temperature of the lemon water.

I DID allow myself to have it once a day any time of day and whatever way I wanted it.

Some days, mostly Sunday’s I’d have it first thing when I woke up and I’d have it hot.  Other days, I’d have it with dinner, after dinner or during the day at room temperature.  And when I was feeling feisty, I’d have it with sparkling water (the new Smart Water Sparkling is AWESOME).

Aha moment #2:  I gave myself permissions to just do it in whatever way worked for me.  Research is great but I didn’t need to be overwhelmed trying to be healthy.

This and the other small changes showed me it’s better to start the process then trying to fit it into a nice, neat box with a pretty bow.  Aha moment #3:  Perfection is legit over rated.

The results of drinking lemon water daily….

Less bloat.  No the mommy pouch didn’t magically disappear.   But I definitely felt lighter and cleaner.

Less cravings/snacking.  I think due to the tartness, I tended to sip on the water instead of chug it down.  This reduced my urge to snack or have something sweet at night.

Lemon water is a staple in my day now.  It’s meeting one of my bigger goals, which is to be healthy from the inside out.  I truly do feel healthier and just good drinking it so why stop!

Till next time….sparkle on!