Nutrition, Fitness, and Wellness articles for busy women who want to lead a healthy, fulfilled life they love.
In 2021, we’re working on small, incremental changes to help us reach our goals, and that means we start by setting ourselves up for success! We can plan ahead for fitness success and give ourselves all the tools we’ll need along the way.
I recently appeared on a podcast and discussed setting ourselves up for success with our exercise habits. The host shared with me that she made a plan to get moving for thirty minutes every day of January, but things went off the rails when she missed a day. There are a couple of key points to consider when looking how to ‘fix’ that. One key is to make sure we’re setting ourselves up in such a way that things don’t go off the rails! An equally important key is to give ourselves some grace when we do miss a day.
Let’s start with setting ourselves up for success. One key is making “SMART” goals: simple, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-based. Making a goal like exercising every day in a month can be a great way to kickstart your journey, but consider if that’s really realistic for your lifestyle. Personally, I think starting off with 3-4 days is a more realistic goal for most schedules. Check your own schedule, consider where you are starting, and make a “SMART” decision on how frequently you should aim to get moving.
Your scheduled movement time should be a commitment you make to yourself that’s too important to cancel.
Before we can make goals, we have to know what we’re aiming for! We have to be aware of what our big goal is before we can begin. We also have to be aware of where we’re starting so that we can set goals that are realistic in our current state. Being aware of what you want to do, where you are, and where you want to go will help your goals stay realistic.
Decide how you want to measure your success, and set up dates to take those measurements! Measuring your progress helps you to keep track of what you’ve accomplished. You can use those measurements to decide if your current plan is working, or if you need to make some tweaks to your routine.
Having variety in our movement plans helps us to be flexible. Some days, you might find yourself too busy for your scheduled yoga class, but maybe you can fit in a quick trip around the block. The weather might not be working with your run in the park, but a home workout video can keep you out of the cold. Some days, you might just not feel like doing whatever workout you planned, but you can go for a bike ride or pick up some dumbbells if that feels more your speed for the day. Being flexible and allowing space for variety will let you get in your movement time each day and try new things along the way.
In order to reach our goals, we need to make movement a part of our routine! Make goals that are realistic for your lifestyle and add in variety to keep things interesting. You’ll have a much better chance of sticking to your plans!
One thing you can count on is that life is going to happen, and there will be things that get in the way of your schedule. What you can control is giving yourself a little bit of grace when things don’t go your way and getting back on your plan just as soon as you can.
Posted - 2/09/21 (Tue) Read more...
In the New Year, I’m committed to putting the fun back into being healthy. One fun commitment I’ve made is getting 8,000 steps in per day, and it’s going great so far! I love getting the fresh air, stepping out of the house, and getting in some movement.
I typically find that I need to replace my sneakers about every six months. I just ordered some new ones, so let’s break down how you can know when it’s time for those old sneakers to go and why it’s so important for your workout!
The biggest tip to know when it’s time to replace your shoes is to take a look at the tread on the bottom. I purchased the exact same pair as my old shoes, so I compared the shoes from six months ago with my new ones. I noticed that the new ones aren’t worn down on the bottoms and have a lot of tread. It’s a remarkable difference between the two pairs of shoes, and it makes a remarkable difference in my body, too!
It might seem like a little thing, but it’s really so important that we get new sneakers whenever they’re worn out because in order to enjoy our workout, we need to not be miserable after it. Some muscle soreness is fine (and expected) because it shows you’re making progress and putting in work, but you shouldn’t have an achy feeling in your feet that tells you they just don’t want to keep going.
Now I know that I’ll enjoy tomorrow’s walk without any aches or pains! That will make it so much easier for me to continue to get out there day after day, so it’s worth the investment.
I know that lots of us are still working on our exercise habits and bringing them into our daily lives, and one of the best tips I can give you is to make sure you’ve got the equipment you need in the condition you need it in.
Posted - 1/26/21 (Tue) Read more...
This new year is bringing many great things already, and I’m so excited that that includes new coaches in our 365 Days of Healthy Living VIP group! Today, I’m giving you the full scoop on my interview with Karen Hoffmann, our fitness coach.
Karen lives at the place where fitness meets fun! She says that now in her forties, she’s even stronger and healthier than she was in her twenties. She has done three half-marathons, and she believes she can be fit and still enjoy all the best things life has to offer!
Karen is going to be focusing on helping us turn “I can’t” into “I can” by showing us what we’re capable of. She shares easy ways to fit exercise into our daily lives and make it fun every step of the way. I love her ideas to help us get stronger and more balanced each and every day!
I can’t wait to hear what Karen has in store for us! If you want to get in touch with Karen, you can connect with her on Facebook or email@example.com. You can also follow along and hear from Karen through our VIP community, 365 Days of Healthy Living, for monthly updates on how you can live a healthy, strong, and balanced life!
Posted - 1/19/21 (Tue) Read more...
Happy New Year! 2020 was so crazy, so I know that everyone is excited to be in 2021 and see where this year takes us. While you’re busy setting goals and making plans for the next 12 months, I have some exciting news! Lisa Lomax is going to be joining our team this year as our Emotional Eating Specialist! I was so excited to talk to Lisa about what she does and what her work means, and I can’t wait to share our interview with you all.
Liza first told me that emotional eating has a tendency to come from one of two extremes: a household of abundance or a household of lack. When you were growing up, if you lived in a home where food was always readily available, you might have learned to go and grab a snack whenever because you’re used to having however much food you want. On the flip side, if you grew up not knowing where your next meal will come from, you might be programmed now to eat anything that you can. Both upbringings (and lots in the middle) can lead to emotional eating.
I know this is SO true for me. Growing up Jewish, we used food to celebrate everything! We would celebrate with food, mourn with food, and never show up to someone’s house without food. Eventually, I realized that it’s totally fine to use food to be social and celebrate, but it doesn’t have to be unhealthy--delicious healthy snacks work, too!
As one of our co-coaches in our VIP Community, 365 Days of Healthy Living, Lisa is going to be popping in monthly with a video to help with our mindset and our progress. Her focus will be on emotional eating with nuggets of truth and tips that you can incorporate into your daily life right now! She’s going to be talking about what emotional eating really is, why we eat emotionally, and how to identify emotional eating in yourself or in others.
Lisa recommends that you get started towards healthy progress today by practicing saying “I am” each day. The words we call ourselves have power, so calling ourselves negative words will lead to negative energy and bad days overall. Instead, Lisa wants us to use “I am” with all the positive things about ourselves! Whether it’s powerful, beautiful, strong, or worthy, reminding yourself of all your best traits will help you to feel your very best and have brighter days.
Posted - 1/05/21 (Tue) Read more...
I recently had the opportunity to interview Jennifer Ginty, a personal wardrobe stylist who works with women and men to help them find style that makes them feel comfortable, confident, and empowered. She offers wardrobe reorganization and personal shopping through her business, Defining Style, and she’s devoted to body positivity and radical self-love. Jennifer is also one of our very own coaches for our VIP Membership group, so she gave us the inside scoop on what we can expect to hear from her next year!
Because we’re in a year full of yoga pants and Zoom calls, the first thing I had to know from Jen was why she wants her clients to not put style on the backburner these days? Jennifer says that to her, style is really just a form of self-care! Paying attention to what you’re wearing and how you’re presenting yourself to the outside world, even through a Zoom meeting, is so important when it comes to how you carry yourself and letting your confidence shine through.
Personally, I’ve been working from home for many years, but I always follow Jennifer’s advice to get myself ready for the day. This helps me to transition from my lounge time to my work routine, and I feel better for doing it! On camera or off, meeting people or not, style is self-care!
Jennifer then pointed out to me that even on a busy day, those few minutes you spend deciding what you’ll wear are really minutes spent on YOU - which is so important! Your ‘me time’ can get pushed aside when life gets busy, but taking just a few minutes a day to focus on yourself will help you feel your best. I know that I feel my most confident when I’m dressed in a way that makes me feel comfortable and stylish.
As for our VIP group, Jennifer has great things on the way! She’s excited to lead us through the year in style. In her work, she isn’t a fairy godmother; she’s a guide! She’s all about guiding her clients to better understand what they feel good in and are most confident wearing. Personally, I’ve always kind of been a jeans and t-shirt kind of gal, so in my professional life, I like to find comfortable alternatives to my everyday favorite pieces so that I can be authentically myself, but look a little more polished, and feel great.
When you start to see fashion as a form of self-care and buy yourself pieces you love, you’ll have a quick pick-me-up whenever you need it. Jennifer counsels her clients to spend time thinking about themselves in addition to focusing on others. Fashion is a great way to do that!
Interested in learning about our VIP group and hearing Jennifer talk about fashion a little more? Click here for more information!
Posted - 12/29/20 (Tue) Read more...
The shops are bustling, ovens are cooking, and there’s a chill in the air! This time of year has us jumping from holiday to holiday, and that lets us decide how we spend that time. Should we turn the dial to vacation mode and indulge a little, or should we stick to our plan?
What is your holiday philosophy going to be this year? It is going to be a shoulder shrug with the plan to ‘be healthy later’? Or is it going to be a strict ‘on plan’ philosophy? Or something in between?
I like to follow an 80/20 philosophy. About 80% of the time, I’m really conscious of eating mindfully. And the other 20% of the time, I enjoy all the goodies. With all the yummy food around, I want to be able to enjoy them to their fullest extent! And at the same time, I know that when January 1st comes around, I want to feel great and not regret any of my holiday food choices.
If you want to start 2021 on your best foot and feel great waking up on New Year’s Day, here are a couple tips to help you get there.
I'm sure you’ve heard me say it before, but it never hurts to say it again: there are no good or bad foods, just the choices you make. If you’re not happy with your results, you need to make different choices. You can definitely enjoy your favorite holiday snack this time of year. Approaching that choice mindfully and with intention will help you enjoy indulging and not over-indulging.
When the weather is chilly, it is easy to get settled on the couch with a holiday movie, and that means you have to be really intentional about getting in movement. Rather than snuggling in with a holiday movie or meeting up with friends via Zoom, get together for a walk and talk! This lets you be outside and stay safe, but also get in much-needed social interaction and some exercise. You’ll feel so much better, and you get to enjoy the pretty holiday sights along the way.
With holiday shopping, baking, and wrapping, it’s easy to get caught up in the busy-ness of this wonderful season! That means it’s more important than ever to take time to recharge. Choose to make time for yourself to practice self-care, even when things get busy. You’ll feel your very best after some time to focus on the things that really make you light up!
This time of year can bring so much joy, and with a few great choices, you can bring that feeling into 2021!
Posted - 12/22/20 (Tue) Read more...
During this time of year, holiday joy is in the air! Whether you’re shopping, baking, or working on planning a holiday that looks a little different this year, the holiday season can mean a lot of time doing prep work! This holiday season may not mean a house full of guests or a dozen different parties, but that doesn’t mean recharging isn’t necessary.
Personally, I love to recharge by being active. One way I do this is by taking time to play pickleball with my family. This way, I get to be active, spend time with my husband and son, and recharge while doing it. Recharging can be anything you want it to be, so long as it’s something that gives you back your energy instead of being a drain and another task on your list.
If you’re an introvert (or, like me, an ambivert) and are finding a little too much quality time with others, consider recharging with a solo walk around your neighbourhood or favorite park. This will give you the opportunity to get moving, take in some fresh air, and give your mind a little bit of space.
When you have just been going too hard for too long, you might feel the need to just turn off your mind for a little while. Watching that movie that you can already quote every line of is a great way to do that! There’s no guilt in taking a break on the couch when you need to recharge your batteries, and a well-loved movie is the perfect solution.
There are so many ways to recharge your mind and get back to feeling 100%. However, the very best way to do that is always going to be by thinking about what it is that makes you happy, and then doing that thing. Whether it’s time spent with a book you love, or quality time with the people you love, self-care can look however you want it to. The most important thing is that you come out of your recharge time feeling energized and ready to take on the world again.
Posted - 12/15/20 (Tue) Read more...
I love getting to talk to women about their health journeys, and I’ve heard a lot this year about struggles with eating mindfully. Whether it’s stress eating or snacking while stuck in the house, 2020 has posed challenges for those trying to reach health goals.
This concern looms even larger when paired with the holidays. Between huge feasts and traditional recipes that aren’t exactly healthy, it can be really difficult to stay on track during the holiday season.
Don’t let food be a source of stress during the holiday season! We have enough stress in our lives these days. I have two tips for getting through the holidays with your sanity and waistline still intact—and even have some fun while doing it.
To eat mindfully means to be aware of what you are putting into your mouth and not just snacking here and there. It’s important to note that that doesn’t mean being restrictive with your eating, but rather just thinking through whether you really want the snack in front of you, or if you’re eating it just because it’s there.
While you’re considering whether you really want the dish in front of you, also think about how much you want. Personally, I love chocolate, but I really just need a few bites of some great quality chocolate. Being aware that a little bit of great chocolate is more satisfying to me than a lot of lesser quality chocolate helps me to indulge less, but have the same level of satisfaction.
I could go on and on about this subject, but I really feel that these two simple tips can be revolutionary to a lot of us. Previous holidays may have looked like... having seconds with every meal or constantly having a treat on hand, but the truth is that mindful eating will help you to enjoy those dishes you really love without feeling like you’re sacrificing all that hard work you put in during the rest of the year.
My challenge to you is to not restrict yourself, but to be intentional and aware of what you’re eating. If you do, you’ll wake up on New Year’s Day feeling fabulous and even happier for not having overindulged this holiday season.
Posted - 12/08/20 (Tue) Read more...
With the holidays coming up, grocery stores are full of yummy seasonal treats, and the season of baking is in full swing. Thanksgiving may be behind us, but for most of us, the entire month of December is a kind of celebration, and that involves a lot of food. Chilly winter days, which we have plenty of here in the Northeast, also lend themselves to lots of snacking when we’re stuck indoors.
Baking sweet treats and feasting with family are great ways to celebrate the season, so it’s important that we can do so mindfully! That’s why I want to talk about my three biggest tips for preventing holiday overeating and derailing your progress.
The holidays often mean indulging in treats, like steaming cups of hot chocolate and warm cookies. That doesn’t mean that every activity has to involve food, though! Make an effort this season to plan festivities that aren’t food-centered. It can be easy to use food to keep you occupied, but instead try other activities, like family walks or crossword puzzles.
Just like we shouldn’t indulge every day, we also shouldn’t be starving ourselves when great food is around. If you avoid eating before a big dinner, you’re much more likely to overdo it. Eat healthy snacks throughout the day so that you can save some room for dinner, but won’t be ravenous once it comes. However, if your approach for your holiday feast is recognizing that it’s just one dinner and won’t ruin your progress, I encourage you to indulge, and then get back to regular eating with the very next meal.
Relaxation can be hard to come by during the holidays, but it’s so important that we find time for it. For extroverts, this might mean spending time with our loved ones, and for introverts, it may mean the opposite. If you are an introvert, allow yourself that necessary alone time so that you can unwind with a solo walk or time with a book. If you’re an ambivert like me, this will mean finding a balance of both. I love to spend time with people, and I also need some down time to just chill by myself. No matter how you prefer to unwind, it’s important to make time for relaxation during the holidays.
The holidays are a great time to celebrate and enjoy time with our loved ones, so soak up every moment! While you’re out showing love and gratitude to everyone else, make sure you show a little to yourself, as well.
Posted - 12/01/20 (Tue) Read more...
Between COVID concerns, election madness, and the typical curveballs that life throws at us, it’s no secret that this has been a really stressful year. It’s a wonder that any of us can even take a breath with all that’s going on.
I talk a lot about the Triangle of Health - with the legs being my Eat, Move & Recharge System. The stress of this year has me thinking a lot about that last “recharge” leg. The upcoming holidays put a lot of focus on food, so we’ve probably all been thinking about the “Eat” part of that triangle. However, I really think that everyone could use a break to Recharge and release some of the 2020 stress.
So what does recharging really look like? There are different ways that we can recharge, and it’s great to have a balance of all of them. For example, minimizing stress wherever possible and getting plenty of sleep both help us to get recharged. One of the most important and most overlooked ways to recharge is to take time to be thankful and find joy in your everyday life.
Being outside for a walk, some fresh air, and some deep breaths might seem like a small thing, but it makes a huge difference in your mindset. Being outside gives you a chance to step away from the screens and change your perspective. I’ve been making a point to go for two walks a day, and it has been such a great way for me to take a break from my work and spend time with my family.
Being outdoors is great for setting boundaries between your work and home life, and it’s also important to set boundaries for your other stressors. There are always things we have to do, especially during the holidays, but you can minimize that by designating a time for work and a time to be away from work. This is especially difficult when we work from home and can feel like we always have to be on call, but it’s really more important than ever in a work-from-home situation.
For some reason, there’s really nothing like just lying on the floor, allowing your body to sink in and relax, and just breathing deeply. This is another chance to take a break from the screens and the stressors. Just five deep breaths can make a miraculous difference in your day.
It might seem unrelated to stress and mental health, but drinking enough water is super important for our bodies. Drinking enough water will help you to stay hydrated and feel better overall.
There are lots of ways that you can take a break to recharge and reduce the stress that seems to be all around us. These are just a few of my many favorite tips! I recently took a break from the stress of work and had a great time at our Perfect Pairings event! We have another coming up on December 4th, and I’m so excited to have another chance to gather virtually and enjoy fine wine, delicious food, and great company. Tickets for this event are closed now, but there will be more! Mark January 29th on your calendar for our first Perfect Pairings of 2021.
Posted - 11/24/20 (Tue) Read more...