Spring into Action

I’ve not written a blog for over 3 months – talk about needing to spring into action! The past few months have been filled with skiing, our engagement (yup, Mike popped the question!) family trips, hikes, snowshoeing, Colorado adventures, cooking, and beer. Lots and lots of beer.

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Spring has sprung and I’m ready to dedicate, activate, commit to a healthy intention and spring into action with a 21-day challenge. I find that dedicating 21 days to make a positive change resets my mindset and creates a positive flow of energy in the right direction. Need to jump start a good habit? Want to commit to a healthy goal but only have found excuses? Want to incorporate a daily practice but haven’t found the right time? Join me in this 21 day challenge to Spring into Action!

I’m kicking off my challenge tomorrow….no time like the present, right!? Below are the next few days laid out – feel free to comment with questions, suggestions and how you’re doing!

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Day 1 – Set an intention, goal, something you want to commit to for the next 21 days – write it down and find time to do it! My intention is to train for a season of hiking, by incorporating a daily yoga practice, weekly hikes in the foot hills of Colorado, and adding a daily circuit workout to weight train. My goal is to get stronger, lighter, more agile so I can have a summer full of healthy adventures!

Day 2 – Start Early. Whether it’s an exercise routine, a commitment to eat better, practicing yoga, or a meditation practice, try starting first thing in the morning, before you do anything else. Fix your mind around positive change and positive change shall follow you.

Day 3 – Close out the day. Ending your day with intention, with the mindset that you can accomplish all you set your mind to, should be how you end each day.

Day 4 – You’ve got a friend. Our friends are the family we choose for ourselves. Today, share your commitment with a friend, ask them to join you, support you, perhaps to make their own commitment.

Day 5 – Share the love. Whether you bring your husband to the gym with you or onto the yoga mat, leash your puppies and take them hiking, or cook a healthy meal with your kids, bring your loved ones into the mix. The network you surround yourself should strengthen you!

Day 6 – Step it up. Today, take your plan of action and kick it up! Add a mile onto your run or do a longer yoga class, try a new workout, add a morning and evening routine, or meal prep for the next few days. Whatever your intention or goal, crank it up today!

Day 7 – Keep it simple. I often get caught up in an elaborate, over-the-top plan to get where I want to go, so much so that I end up not ever starting or getting burned out quickly and abandoning ship. Today is about going back to the simplicity of your intention or goal, shaving it down to the roots. You do not need to overthink the steps to get you where you envision yourself. All you need is to take one step after the other.

That’s the first week – join me!

 

Week 2 of the #Forward21 Challenge

It’s been said that it takes 21 days to create a positive habit, but I’m not sure it’s as simple as all that. Positive habits require commitment, repetition, dedication. To package it all up in 21 days seems great, so easy, do-able. And guess what? It’s a start.

Positivity begets positivity and once we start incorporating more of it into our day to day, habits can form. I always say healthy isn’t a fad diet, it’s a lifestyle, so I try to put together challenges that emphasis that. And today we start Week 2 of the #Forward21 challenge!

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Monday, January 18th – Meatless Monday. Try a new meatless meal, chock full of veggies! For inspiration, try to think of a dish you love that contains meat (chili, burgers, skewers, meatloaf) and try to make it with beans, lentils, veggies – whole food! Here are a few amazing recipes I’ve tried for those meaty favorites, sans the meat:

Mushroom Stroganoff
Lentil Loaf
Crispy Orange Cauliflower

I’m going to try a new recipe & will be sure to post a video! What will you make? Post pictures, tag #Forward21!!!

Tuesday, January 19th – Take it to the mat Tuesday. Today, find time to take your troubles, your stress, your thoughts, your anxiety, to your mat. Yoga has such an amazing way of allowing yourself to melt,, going back to your breathe and simply being. Better circulation, released waste from exhaling, increased flexibility, tension and stress release are all major benefits from rolling out your mat and spending time on your health. I’m going to be doing a Yogaglo class!

Wednesday, January 20th – Workout Wednesday. Sometimes you just have to sweat it out! When we work out, endorphins are released along with a feeling of euphoria. Plus, working up a sweat, working the muscles in our body keeps our heart healthy and our weight down. Try heading outside for a jog, lifting some weights, or a circuit workout (50 jumping jacks, 50 lunges, 50 situps, 50 squats, then do it again!)

Thursday, January 21st – Thankful Thursday.

“Your work is to discover your world and then with all your heart give yourself to it.” Buddha

When is the last time you sat and gave thanks to exactly where you are? To give thanks to all you have, instead of thinking of all you want? Today, write a list of things you’re thankful for in your life. Give tribute to the abundance that surrounds you. Take notice of the simple things and suddenly gratitude fills you. When you have your list, tape it to your fridge or somewhere you will see it regularly. Remember to live with a thankful heart.

Friday, January 22nd – Feel Good Friday. It’s the end of the week, you have two days off (hopefully!) and it’s time to take that Friday feeling to the next level. Today, do the things that make your body sing, that make you feel alive, that allow you to shine. Start your day off with a wholesome breakfast, full of vitamins (a smoothie, avocado toast, chia pudding, or overnight oats). Keep positive thoughts in the forefront of all you do today, creating a positive vibe that follows you wherever you go. Avoid negativity at all costs, excusing yourself from cranky co-workers, changing the subject to uplifting thoughts with a pessimistic friend or family member and focus on your good qualities, instead of negative talk. What makes you feel good? Don’t be shy, ride that good feeling!

Saturday, January 23rd – Sample Saturday. It can be difficult to dive into something new with both feet. That being said, fear of new should never stop you from trying something and variety is the spice of life! Today is dedicated for sampling something you’ve wanted to try. Sample a zoomba or hot yoga class, try a new recipe with an ingredient you’ve never cooked or baked with, or sample a new activity with your family or friends. Sky’s the limit – what will you sample today?

Sunday, January 24th – Sunday Funday. Today’s meal prep day! I usually set aside a few hours to plan a few meals, grocery shop, then cook them. When the week gets hectic, with work, chores, errands to run, kids to cart around. A healthy, simple dinner may be the last thing on your mind (and who has the time!). Try picking out 2 recipes and prepping some vegetables to use throughout the week. Here are some posts about a few meals that keep well in the fridge or freezer: Weeknight Meals & Soups galore.

Share how your week is going on Facebook Group, follow me on Instagram for daily updates and be sure to let me know how you’re doing with the challenge!

Happy Forward21!

 

 

 

 

 

Thankful for Movement

Happy post-Thanksgiving! My holiday was spent in Moab, Utah with Mike, my mom, sister, brother-in law, niece, nephew, cousin and cousin in law. There was a whole crew of us! We spent our days hiking in Arches National Park, seeing gorgeous natural wonders, magnificent arches, babbling creeks, and huge boulders and jagged rocks. I’ve never seen anything like it in my life and feel so incredibly blessed to have gone to experience it with almost my entire family. There’s nothing like fresh air, family and natural wonders to make a holiday glorious. Our traditional annual Thanksgiving hike landed us at the Delicate Arch – talk about being thankful!

Moab

Unfortunately, a horrible tooth infection kept me down for the count for a good 30+ hours following the hike…coming to the Thanksgiving table for only a brief moment to gingerly nibble on some sweet potatoes, homemade cranberry and cauliflower before heading back to bed. After a trip to the ER the next morning, a dose of antibiotics, and some kombucha to combat the antibiotics screwing with my gut flora, I was on the mend. Our last day, yesterday, arrived and I was feeling so much better, ready to step outside and get a bit of dirt under my feet. My mom and I headed out and ended up hiking two glorious trails, each quite different from the next, both full of incredible sights.

So Day 14 of the Mindful 21 Day challenge has arrived and we are on our way home. An early start to the day hasn’t left time for meditation yet, but I have reflected on the past few days. Being with family is wonderful, but can be challenging if you share different viewpoints on things, have different habits or styles of doing things. That is where mindfulness becomes so crucial. Being mindful of how your actions, words, and behaviors effect those around you becomes so apparent when you’re in close quarters. It’s during these times when taking pause and breathing deeply can make a huge difference. And getting out into the great outdoors, turning off the ipods, video games, tv, means quality time spent in nature.

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Tomorrow, Day 15 of the Mindful 21 Day challenge, adds onto the 5 minutes of meditation and meatless meal with movement. Being mindful of our internal state, taking time to calm and center yourself is, I believe, vital for your happy. Taking a proactive approach to what you’re eating and being mindful of how it’s fueling your body is vital to your health. Incorporating movement into your life, feeling the fluidity of your body, adds vitality, energy, longevity to your life. Being mindful of moving your body each day should be a priority – and what better what to move than yoga!

sun salutation

Tomorrow, find time for meditation, a meatless meal, plus movement. Try a 5-10 minute yoga flow or, 10 sun salutations or even splurge and head to the studio. I recently joined Yogaglo, something my girlfriend and cohost Sarah introduced me to, and I am in love! Pick the duration, the teacher, the focus, the body part, the level and do it in the comfort of your own home.

I have some short Yoga videos on my YouTube channel, but there are also a million great FREE Yoga videos out there that will get you moving. Here’s one describing how to do a Sun Salutation. Try something that speaks to you and will work with your practice.

How will you move? Let me know what gets you up and flowing.

Happy movement!