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    6 years ago

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Finding Me Again

Weekly Update: I did it! I did a solid 3 weeks of ME to get my self back to feeling like me. It had nothing to do with weight, and everything to do with emotional healing, but I did of course see physical changes too.   I worked out every day for 30 minutes, and I ate clean foods (but a lot of them!!!)  I  lost 4.8 pounds, 13.5 inches and gained my smile back.

I culminated the 3 weeks with a 5K with some of the moms from my Couch to 5K running program.   I am a health and wellness coach, but also teach group fitness to local moms (boot camp, running, pilates).   It was so hot, but we did it!  I gave my son the medal when we got home, he earned it for 'helping me teach' class for 10 weeks (he was my little cheer leader to the various moms as we would run).    The day of my miscarriage, I took him to class but didn't run since I was not yet sure what was happening.    We stood on the sidelines, and he cheered and gave high 5's to each of the moms.   It was a wonderful day despite the sadness.

This sums up how I feel about my job.   I get to help people, particularly moms, while also living a healthy and fullfilling life myself.

I used to daydream about being able to really love what I did - but then my practical mind always got in the way.  I'm glad I let myself leap, and so grateful for my husband for having faith in me.

Having just completed a 'solid' 3 weeks of the program that changed my life, I wanted to look back and see what my first results looked like.   

I dedicated 3 weeks of my life almost exactly 2 years ago.  I had no idea what to expect, little did I know that 2 years later I'd be a full time coach helping others reach their goals while continuing to reach my own.  Little did I know that the same program that helped me lose 75 pounds would also help me emotionally deal with the pain after a miscarriage.   

I am seriously grateful every single day.

One of the things I am grateful for these days is that my flexible schedule allows me to spend every other Thursday with my grandmother, and my son's great grandmother (he is lucky enough to have two great grandmothers!).   She is still living in her own house, and is moving around as good as could be expected for a 90 year old woman.    I never want to take for granted this time I have with her and am so grateful that twice a month we get to have a luncheon with 4 generations. 

Food news!    Back to food prep.  This is an easy staple in the house - I always have all the ingredients so it's super easy to pull together.    Qunioa, a bag of frozen veggies, salt, pepper and olive oil!

And I continue to make these every week (so far not sick of them!)  Stuffed peppers with homemade sauce, rice (or quinoa depending on the day), peppers, onions and spinach.  

This is my salad from my lunch with my Grandmother last week - it's proof that you can be creative at restaurants.  As a vegetarian it's hard for me to get protein in.  Most vegetarian dishes are some sort of carb and protein and usually chese (unless it's vegan).   All good in moderation, but for years I would end up hungry after going out to eat.   Not any more! This salad actually is not on the menu, but I request a 'double salad with eggs added on' and I am specific that I want 2 full eggs.  Not once have they given me a hard time!  All you need to do is ask.

If you enjoy my blog, I'd love to have you in my private (women only) Facebook Group dedicated to health, fitness and nutrition:

If you'd like to work with me as your coach, create a free account:

Mommy & Me Website:

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Stronger Every Day

Weekly Update!  I have to say, I forgot how great it feels to have a plan for both nutrition and fitness.  I am not one to be 'perfect' all the time, but before the miscarriage with the pregnancy my nutrition was a total mess (lots of morning sickness, and I literally was trying just to not get sick).   Since being back on my favorite clean eating plan - I just FEEL better.  I have just a few days left to share my final results (my 'before' photos are the ones on the right below).    

What's fun about the photos below, they are literally the exact same weight just a year apart.  This is why these days I don't focus on weight at all. The one on the right I am much firmer despite having just been pregnant for 3 months.  Time, clean eating, and fitness really do make a bigger difference then a 'number' on a scale.  

This weekend we had a total blast - I've been really trying to just live in the moment, you are never guaranteed a tomorrow, even if you work to be insanely healthy.   We didn't leave the house all weekend and it was awesome!! 

Back to my comment above, while we are never guaranteed a tomorrow, I still workout, and eat well - because it enhances my TODAY.  It helps me cope with hard things, it gives me energy, and it makes me move freely in a body that is healthy so that I can really enjoy the life I do have. 

Here are some half way photos of my 3 week commitment to myself - you may or may not see changes from the above photo, but I FEEL different and that's all that I care about.  I am also much less sad then I was 3 weeks ago, a total win.

As I was working out this week I looked around and smiled.   I have this amazing basement gym. I realize for some  people the idea of working out in a basement may seem isolating, but I never feel alone.  I share my workouts in the various groups or with individuals I coach - I feel like I am 'with' hundreds of others when I workout - except the beauty of it all is I can do it on my own schedule, and in my pjs!

While I lived at the gym for a long time, I always wanted an at home space too - mainly to 'practice' things that I do when I teach classes, but I never thought I'd get my space.  Over 10 years later, and here it is!  The equipment in my gym has slowly been accumulating over the years. My favorite is the orange yoga mat - I got it 15 years ago for my very first Pilates class and have kept it because I chuckle at it - it's actually a children's mat and about half the size of a normal one - but it reminds me of my very first encounter with fitness, and Pilates. 

This photo was taken from this past week in my Couch to 5K class during the Core part of class after our run.  Ben has been coming to classes with me for close to 2 years now and typically plays - but recently he's been mimicking me and even verbally 'cueing' various moves - this past week he dropped down and got into a perfect plank!

Here are some of the moms from my Couch to 5K class (there are 17 total in the class), our official 5K is this weekend, but a bunch of us decided to do an earlier run as well - it was at 8pm and we wore neon glow sticks - totally a weird race compared to all the others I've done in my life time, but also a blast!

Pre race bliss!

And now, my favorite news!!!

I let a mom in my running class a running stroller for the 10 weeks, and she surprised me last week with a bunch of BANANAS!!!   I cracked up - some teachers get apples, but my students know me well enough to know how happy bananas make me!

And strawberries!  Here is my son with all of our 'loot' from a day on the fields berry picking.    We have been eating them, dehydrating them and freezing them all week!

I've been really enjoying taking time to make healthy meals - what's nuts is when I'm eating well the 'stress' of eating healthy isn't there - I think of healthy stuff pretty easily even if we only have odds and ends in the house for recipes.   Here is a Mexican stir fry - wild rice, tofu, peppers, spinach, onions and tomatoes with a little cheese. SO GOOD! And I might note, this is my GIANT pasta bowl.  When you eat well, you certainly don't starve.

Another new favorite is actually very similar ingredients - stuffed peppers!    The filling: wild rice, homemade red sauce (all veggies - so easy and so good!), tomatoes, the tops of the peppers cut up, onions and spinach.

Finished product!

And last but not least - I have been dying to make this for the last 2 weeks but have been too lazy to cut up the squash.  I invented this one during a cauliflower shortage a few months ago.  It's so good and so simple! The crust is sage, egg, almond flour and squash and then I cook it, and then top it with whatever I want (this one has mozzarella, ricotta, peppers, sundried tomatoes, spinach, and onions).   Delish!

If you enjoy my blog, I'd love to have you in my private (women only) Facebook Group dedicated to health, fitness and nutrition:

If you'd like to work with me as your coach, create a free account:

Mommy & Me Website:

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Halfway Point!

Weekly Update: I experienced the loss of a baby at 12 weeks on 6/2 that was taxing emotionally, mentally and physically.  The same day I was supposed to feel 'safe' I found out that my baby's heart had stopped beating.

My body had been prepping - and my food choices were limited based on how I was feeling.  

It's been insanely hard to cope with this - I'm a planner so I already had 'ideas' of what certain dates would look like, or how my body would feel.

With the loss I decided I had two options - sit in bed and cry - or focus on things I know make me FEEL GOOD.   

So there won't be 'a scale' update until I hit my 21st day, but I wanted to share more about how I'm coping.  In the past, stress has led me to eat - which of course leads me to be more stressed and I'm realizing makes it harder to cope with emotions.  Because my brain literally feels 'fuzzy' from the food choices.  I also get down on myself, which makes coping harder - because instead of appreciating what I have done, I get frustrated with how I feel I've failed.

As of today, I'm just over halfway into my 3 week commitment to focus on ME.  I took before photos, measurements and a weight - but my goal is a healthy mind.

I actaully don't 'see' much of a difference yet - but this smile is not one you would have seen in the days that followed June 2nd - proud of myself for slowly getting back to 'me' through healthy habits.

I also have some fun things planned this month (that were planed months ago) including a "night run" which I've never done before - but it's a 5K race and all neon themed! I got these fun glow bracelets at Target for $1 for my friends and I to wear.   This will be my first 5K in close to a year!

I wanted to share this photo, a favorite from last week.   Every other Thursday my son and I get together with my Grandmother and Mom - it's been truly amazing. I love seeing the way my son and grandmother interact - motivation to stay healthy so I can see my great grand children one day as well. 

With our loss, we decided to go away from a family trip - I had remembered someone in one of my Pilates classes telling me about a place called Great Wolf Lodge - I looked it up and it seemed awesome, so we booked it at the last minute. And it WAS awesome!  Perfect for parents because it was pretty much all inclusive (with an indoor water park!) and you could bring your own food (see below).   I loved not having to 'leave the hotel' and then come back for naps, etc.

I am super dedicated to this 21 Day Nutrition and Fitness program - not for weight loss, but to reclaim myself and my health and my sanity to be honest.   I had a weird feeling the gym may be basic, so I brought along my own weights (a fitness band would have worked too but I decided on weights since we were driving).   Glad I did! They had barely any equiptment.

I even packed my energize too!  I love this stuff. 

Here I am in the morning doing my thing!

We brought 99% of our food but had to eat out one meal because of a little slip up on what I packed - opted for breakfast which I find the easiest  meal out for a few reasons...

1.  It's usually a buffet, so you can pick and choose your options
2. As a vegetarian, I find eggs to be the easiest protein source when eating out

This was a great part of the week too! We have monthly Team Meetings for my coaching team and try to get as many people in person as possible.  I love the community and just the fact that we are all 'real' people looking to be happier, healthier and lead fullfilling lives.

Here's some more food from our trip.   A new favorite snack is bananas with PB on them..SO GOOD!  And this is my favorite zucchini casserole (I adapt a little, use whole eggs, add corn, remove the cheese). 

I also packed salad but forgot dressing - so I got creative and added home made sauce - extra veggies and it was actually good!

We got home and had some fruit that was starting to 'turn' so I pulled out the dehydrator (I forgot about it!) and made "Candy" for my son - he loves it!  (Watermelon and Banana). 

If you enjoy my blog, I'd love to have you in my private (women only) Facebook Group dedicated to health, fitness and nutrition:

If you'd like to work with me as your coach, create a free account:

Mommy & Me Website:

Wednesday, June 8, 2016


Weekly Update:  This week I am chosing to stay off the scale - and actually for the next three weeks.  I took my before photos and for the first time ever they were taken in my bikini instead of shorts and sports bra.  

Unfortunately, I can not share why at this point, but some very hard things happened to my family over the last week and I needed to give myself a fresh start and new outlook on life.   It has nothing to do with the photos even, but it has a lot to do with LIFE.

The last 3 months I have been struggling a lot with nutrition, but it was for something exciting.  Something that was going to be worth it all.   Except on Thursday morning.  A week ago exactly, my world came tumbling down.

I know I will be ok, and I am focusing on all the reasons I have to keep pushing forward, like this little guy.   This little guy is someone I waited for for a very long time, and he was exactly who I needed to be a mother to.   He makes my days hard, afterall he's a toddler! But he also makes me so happy, and so grateful that I was patient and waited for him.

In light of my pain last week and this weekend, I decided to stop everything and spend a day with him at our local lake.    I am grateful that I have a career that allows me that flexibility.  I am grateful that I let myself take the day off with him.

I have been really trying to focus on what I have, instead of what I don't have - and when I do that my heart fills back up.

Due to medical complications and doctor restrictions I had to take close to a week off from my morning fitness.   It was actually the last thing on my mind, but once I was given the clearance, I was excited.  Because the mental release I get when I move is something I missed.

However, when I got up Monday morning ready for my fresh start and new beginning, I was slammed with a lot of emotions.  When I had last done my morning ME time, life was very different.   My future was very different.  My vision for the next few months and year to come was very different.

I had two choices Monday morning.   Go back to bed and cry, or do my workout and be willing to cry along the way.

I chose to do my workout and cry along the way.    Why?  Because crying was going to make me sad, but at least moving would give me a chance of processing things.

And it did.

I have continued to move every morning this week - usually with some, if not a lot of tears.  But it is helping me to have a healthy focus.

And here are the 'before' photos - new start, new outfit for them.  The bikini has nothing to do with body image, but more or less a way of saying 'this is who I am, and where I am now"

My goal is 21 days, I have no weight or size or even photo tranformation goal.  

I love this photo, because it is the first and only wih my son in a before photo.    The joy on his face - Super Ben!    It gives me hope to a happy and full future.

My food news this week (and the next few weeks) will be fun, because with my commitment to me, that means commitment to my nutrition.  Here are a few things I've had over the week.

I forgot how GREAT it tastes to have some well planned healthy foods.  So much  yummier than random meals on the go.

A staple 'quick' meal of mine is a veggie burger on lettuce - so good!

Quinoa and veggie stuffed peppers!

Mexican yummy!

Banana and peanut buttery snack.

And this! One thing I missed the last 3 months was this amazing snack.    My Shakeolgy makes me feel good, energetic, healthy and just overall good.  The last 3 months, I was struggling with some sickness and unable to drink it most days - I would have gone years not drinking it if I needed to, but I am grateful at least that it can be back in my life, because I did miss it.

Stuffed shells! Ricotta, spinach, egg and butternut squash!

If you enjoy my blog, I'd love to have you in my private (women only) Facebook Group dedicated to health, fitness and nutrition:

If you'd like to work with me as your coach, create a free account:

Mommy & Me Website:

Wednesday, June 1, 2016


Weekly Update:  I wanted to start this weekly update with a non scale victory.   Two very small things that you may or may not notice in this photo without my arrows... 1.  My 'tail' - it's a big part of my workouts these days, I start my morning by putting a tie in the back of my pants so they don't fall down.   I could get new pants, but these ones have been with me for the last 2 years and I can't seem to break say goodbye!  1.  A very small amoutn of definition behind my leg, its small, but I saw it immediately and it made me smile!

Another big Non Scale Victory (NSV) - realizing that a very important part of my week with my son is our classes.   He socializes, the moms socialize, and we teach class together.  He's so used to seeing me move, and smile and help other moms value their health.   THIS is what I want him to think of fitness as he gets older.  That it's FUN.

I wanted to share this photo, because I want to live a long happy life - like this woman here next to me.  My grandmother probably never 'worked out' in the traditional sense, but she has lived a very active life.   Always doing all her own yardwork (since the age of 45 when my grandfather died), scrubbing and cleaning and real grunt work that I'm sure has kept her as healthy as she is today at 90 years old. 

We went away for the long weekend, and THIS was my office - how cool is that? My son napped, I did a little work while listening to the wind blow and the water lap.

But just because it was vacation, doesn't mean I didn't want my ME time.  I crept down stairs in the creeky cabin, and walked through the rain to the garage for 30 minutes of ME time each morning.   And I was happier as a result!

Still had a great view though!

I brought my goodies with me - they make me feel good, so I don't travel with out them!

If you enjoy my blog, I'd love to have you in my private (women only) Facebook Group dedicated to health, fitness and nutrition:

If you'd like to work with me as your coach, create a free account:

Mommy & Me Website: