If you’re new to my blog, each and every Friday I post a Friday Flashback, taking you on a journey back into my past life. Why? Well, because I’ve been there and can totally relate to body image issues, dieting struggles and all the other things in between.
This week, I want to touch upon how we treat our bodies. During my prime time of diet-obsessed living and calorie counting, I completely disrespected my body.
I filled up on toxic, chemicalized “diet” foods that promised to make me skinny (at least, according to all the magazines and advertisements) and ate or drank my feelings away. I abused myself in the mirror (telling myself I am fat, I am not pretty enough, I am not good enough) and abused myself in the gym by overworking it and forcing myself to exercise (even when I didn’t want to or when my body was saying “No! Enough!”) I listened to what the number on the scale said, instead of what my body was telling me loud and clear.
I remember being so hungry: for real food, for love, for the answers. Unfortunately, I was starving myself by loading up on both toxic foods and toxic relationships alike. And if I ever decided to “treat” myself & go all out? (I put “treat” in quotes because my treats really weren’t treats at all) Forget it! I’d spend the rest of the weekend consumed with guilt and attacking myself for being “bad.”
It’s safe to say, I was not treating myself with love (far from it). In fact, I was treating my body with hatred, fear and guilt and quite frankly it didn’t feel good.
Flash forward to now, and I’ve learned that our bodies are one of the most powerful and beautiful tools we have. Now why would we treat something so miraculous so poorly at times? I want you to be honest with yourself and ask, “When was the last time I did something truly nice for myself?” Can you answer that question with 100% confidence?
I challenge you this weekend to throw all your self-sabotaging thoughts out the window and pay attention to what your body is trying to tell you. Put the scale, rules and guilt on the back burner and bring a lil love to the spotlight. Know that it’s OK to be “bad” once in a while, and break the rules. Trust that your body will give you the answers you need, leading you to the truth. And remember, no matter what, treat your body with pure love…always.
When was the last time you did something kind for yourself? How do you treat your body with love? Are you stuck on dieting and self-sabotaging thoughts? I’m here for you! Please feel free to email me or schedule a FREE 15-minute info session to learn more about my health coaching programs/ to see if we’d work well together. My programs are designed to help women like me live to their fullest potential, break free of diet-obsessed living, and learn to use REAL food & self-care as n.o.u.i.s.h.m.e.n.t.
Good morning ladies! I hope you are all safe and dry from the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Fortunately, the worst of it for me is losing power for a few days so I can’t really complain, but I’m praying for those whose homes have been flooded or destroyed.
I’m running out of power on my laptop, currently writing at Daybreak Coffee House (where I was pleased to run into the lovely Cait from Cait Plus Ate who is just the most bubbly, friendly girl!) This will have to do as my “office” for now, which I don’t mind AT ALL because this Pecan Roast & Vegetarian Egg Sandwich on sourdough is totally hitting the spot.
Anyway, I wanted to talk about a rather popular topic today on Healthy Chicks: motivation. That is, how to stay motivated even during those realllllllyyyy tough times.
Here are some tips to get you inspired, whether you need motivation to run that race or simply get out of bed an hour earlier!
1. First and foremost, you need to have a purpose. If you’re struggling to stay on a healthy diet and exercise regimen, ask yourself “Why do I want to eat well and exercise?” Is it to lower your cholesterol? Is it so you can stay healthy for your kids? Is it so you can get in shape to run that first half marathon? Are you doing it to squeeze into those skinny jeans you’ve been keeping in the back of your closet for years? What is your “Why?” Make it specific. Instead of “So I can lose 10 pounds,” make it “So I can lose 10 pounds in order to reach my pre-baby weight and feel good about shopping for clothes again. ” You see? Find your purpose.
2. Don’t Let Slip-Ups Bring You Down. OK, so you had a brownie even though you “gave up” desserts. Woop-dee-doo. Instead of eating five more brownies, a piece of pizza and your weight in guilt, take control of your slip-up and move on. Because in reality, it’s just one tiny mistake which you can totally work your way out of damage-free. Chug some water, go for a walk and move on with it. We’re only human after all, so don’t try to be perfect. Instead, try to do the best you can do. Remember that if you’re living a healthy lifestyle most of the time, a treat here and there isn’t going to destroy your progress. Rather, guilt and pity parties is what destroys your success. Don’t let this get the best of you!
3. On that note, Don’t Diet! That’s right, I said it: You do not need to diet to lose weight. In fact, I am 100% against dieting because most diets call for some sort of restriction which makes you miserable which then makes you want to eat everything in your cabinet which then makes you guilty. And as you know, guilt is the worst feeling of all. Rather than going on the Cabbage Soup Diet or the South Beach Diet or the Flat-Abs diet, just make a promise to yourself that you’re going to eat well. What does eating well mean? To me, that means whole, clean, REAL foods. Lots of whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, organic meats, local food, and things that don’t come from packages. Also, replace one can of soda a day with a large glass of water. Next week, try two. You get the picture.
4. While this may sound counterintuitive, try to focus on the Little Picture. Instead of trying to be the BEST, run the farthest and eat PERFECTLY, shoot for little goals. Remember, Small changes = Big results.
5. Remember to Have Fun: No matter what goal you’re trying to achieve, if you aren’t having fun with it, you aren’t going to get anywhere. Make it enjoyable! Start a walking group with your girlfriends, take turns making healthy meals with your roommate, get your husband on board, experiment with new recipes, or buy a really bright-colored workout outfit that you feel amazing in. Do whatever it takes to keep things fun and new!
What do you do to stay motivated? Share your tips in the comment section!
Motivation. By dictionary definition is means the desire to do; interest or drive. But to me, it means much more. I’ve been thinking a lot about motivation, and the act of getting yourself motivated, these past few days. After all, it is quite the powerful force.
Motivation is what gets you out of bed in the morning even when you want to crawl back into your cave and sleep forever. Motivation is the thing that helps you go that extra mile while running even when your legs feel like JELL-O and you just want to stop. Motivation helps drive you to take that extra plunge, take a chance and fight to the finish to reach your dreams.
And what better coach than yourself to help motivate you to get what you want out of life? This week motivation has taken me far. I motivated myself to stop crying and feeling sorry for myself, and rather score a part time job at an adorable little cafe. So what if it’s not my dream job in a magazine agency, but it’s a start. I motivated myself to run 10 miles a few days ago in preparation for my half marathon. Did I want to wake up at 6:30 a.m. to run my little legs off? No, not really at first. But a good, solid dose of motivation carried me through…a whole 10 miles worth. And guess what? I felt great when I finished.
You see, you are your best coach, your best friend, and your #1 cheerleader at times. You can’t depend on anyone else to do that for you. Sure your boyfriend or your best friend can help you out and give you a little push, but it’s YOU that takes you there. And if you don’t believe in yourself and start taking control of your life, well then, nothing good will come of that. So go ahead, root yourself on and take on whatever it is you’re going after with a little dose of motivation!
What do you do to motivate yourself? What goals and dreams are you currently tackling?
There’s been a hell of a lot of complaining here in Boston lately – not only is it due to the devastating Pats loss the other night, but for some reason Mother Nature doesn’t want to give us a break with the snow, and hypothermia-inducing weather. Seriously, it’s just not OK. But complaining and being Oscar the Grouches about it also is totally not OK either. Here are 7 little things to help perk you up in times of winter depression.
1. There are only 55 days until Spring! It’s true, I calculated it myself on my Calendar. That means birds chirping, flowers blooming and temps in the 50s and 60s isn’t that far away.
2. Valentine’s Day is coming up in a few weeks. For all of you V-Day haters, check out this awesome Anti-Valentine’s Day Bash put on by Boston Event Guide: The Flirt Fest! Tickets are only $20 for a pair or $15 a pop if you buy before Friday. Plus, you can have a little more fun with it by nominating your friends to be Boston’s Biggest Flirt.
If you’re a Valentine’s Day lover, then it’s your excuse to wear pink, red and white all day, wine ‘n’ dine, and gush over your boyfriend. A win-win situation for both!
3. You can drink as much hot cocoa (with mini mellows), tea, and coffee as your little heart desires. It’s frickin frigid outside; you have an excuse.
4. You can wear all your favorite summer dresses with a cute jacket, boots and sexy tights and call it a new oufit.
5. While you’re complaining about the cold now, at least you don’t have to deal with sweat marks, mosquito bites and 110 degree city weather that summer brings. Winter doesn’t suck so bad after all, now does it?
6. You still have 6 months to tone up for beach season, rather than 6 days! Seriously, there’s plenty of time. That’s why I’ve been running & doing Core Fusion now rather than later…
7. Fire places. ‘Nough said.
So I completed my first 10K this morning. Yup, the girl who couldn’t even run two miles a few years ago, cried in the middle of a 5K once and has never ran more than five miles ran an entire 6.2 miles today! The best part? I couldn’t have felt more alive, energized and motivated during the race, and feel absolutely amazing now! (Well…my legs could use some hardcore hot tub time, but other than that life is good) Oh and I beat my goal time of 60 minutes…59:34 baby! Anyway, I know first-time races can be a little scary, intimidating and a heck of a lot of work, so I put together a little list of inspirations to get you through your next race. Whether it’s your first 5K, your first 10K or your very first run EVER, these little mental motivations got me through the race today and hopefully work for you too:
1. “I’m going to pace myself and go at a rate I feel comfortable with and know that I can maintain. If I get tired, I will slow down. If I feel good, I will speed up.”
2. “It’s just me and the road. Everyone else doesn’t matter right now. This is my race.”
3. “Just focus on one step at a time, one mile at a time and the finish line will be there before you know it.”
4. “I am strong, I am healthy, I can do this!”
5. “There will be people who finish way ahead of me, and people who finish way behind me. And that’s OK!”
6. “Everyone is out here for a good cause, and each and every person here is amazing. Support each other. It’s not JUST about the time and it’s NOT a competition.”
7. “Just get through the race. Crossing the finish line is going to feel amazing, especially listening to all the people cheer me on. Then I can chug water and eat a big breakfast (Mmm)!”
8. “Remember to breathe. In through your nose…out through your mouth…in through your nose…out through your mouth.”
9. “Enjoy the scenery while you’re at it. This isn’t something you see every day and it makes the race go by a heck of a lot faster.”
10. “If I can do this, I can do anything. Next time, I will push myself even farther and continue to challenge myself.”
I’m a morning person. I always have been. My roommates in college used to envy the fact that I could wake up right when the sun came up perkier than ever. They also used to loathe the fact that I’d stomp around the apartment with my sneakers slamming cabinets and shuffling around pots and pans to make my morning omelet, as they tried to get their beauty sleep (sorry girls!) So yes, I’ll admit that getting up in the morning is a tad easier for me than the average human being.
However, I am not Superwoman and I too have my days where I want to throw my Blackberry out the window as the annoying alarm rings in my ear. Take this morning for instance. I set my alarm for 7:30 a.m. because I wanted to get my morning run over with before the horrendous 100-degree weather hit. However, I was angry when I heard my alarm go off this morning. Not only did it interrupt a good dream (don’t you hate that?) but I also was not ready to get up. So I sat there for a few seconds debating whether I should go back to sleep or not, and decided to rip the Band-Aid off. Yes, the first few seconds are painful, but once I sprung out of bed I was good to go. Then when I put on my running outfit and sneaks, I knew there was no turning back!
So, no I wasn’t born with super powers, nor do I have any magical advice to give you on how to get yourself going in the morning. But I do have some motivational tips that’ll help you make it through a tough workout painlessly.
1. Spring Out of Bed: As I already mentioned before, getting out of bed is the hardest part, then the rest is a piece of cake! Do whatever you need to do in order to move your body from your comfy cloud-like mattress to a standing position. I use the “rip the Band-Aid off” method, where I give myself a few seconds of recuperating then just jump up before I can talk myself out of it.
Thinking about how great I’ll feel AFTER my workout also helps me get through the initial doubts. Just think: if you go back to bed you’ll already waste a few hours of your day, and probably won’t end up achieving your goals for the day. Just take the day on my friend…really you won’t regret it!
2. Fuel Up! Confession: I didn’t listen to my own advice this morning, and boy do I regret it. Before you set out, make sure you’re properly fueled. First things first: drink a good amount of water before you head out. Then, eat something small yet substantial that’s going to get you through your workout. An apple with some natural peanut butter, Greek yogurt, piece of toast, protein bar, or half of a fruit smoothie all work. Eat something small that you know your stomach can handle. Then when you return from your workout, you can dive into something more filling.
3. Set a Goal… It’s always good to have some sort of goal in mind, whether it’s going a certain distance, doing a certain amount of reps at the gym, or trying a new yoga class. Today my goal was to run another 5 miles, as I hit the 5-mile mark last week and wanted to see if I still had it goin’ on. Alas, I mapped out a route and set off to see where my legs would take me…
4.…But Don’t Take Your Goal Too Seriously: Goals are always great, but don’t beat yourself up if you don’t achieve what you set out to do. Today was HOT out. Yes, even at 7:30 a.m. the temperature was already nearly 90 degrees. (So much for beating the heat). Anyway, midway through my run I had to re-access whether running the full five miles was right for my body. I thought about stopping and walking the rest (around mile four) but realized that my breathing was in control and another mile was definitely doable, so I simply slowed down my pace.
Sure, I didn’t run the five miles in record-breaking time, however I DID IT and felt amazing afterward! Had I felt faint or dehydrated, I would have stopped and felt OK about that. It’s all about listening to your body, and not pushing yourself beyond what you’re comfortable with.
5. Take Advantage of Mind Tricks: I’ll be the first to admit that sometimes exercise can be strenuous and downright painful. That’s when I start playing tricks with my mind. If you know you still have another three miles to go (or another 30 minutes in a challenging group fitness class), thinking about it (and looking at the clock every 10 seconds) is going to drive you absolutely crazyyyyy.
Instead, play mind tricks. Today I blocked out any discouraging thoughts, and instead started thinking about what I was going to do the rest of the way. All the sudden, I was half way around the loop again without even thinking about it. I also like to look at the smaller picture; that is when I’m running a far distance, I’ll use street signs or telephone poles as different benchmarks. That way, instead of thinking about an ADDITIONAL THREE MILES, I’ll take it one sign at a time. Music also helps get your mind off the struggle, which leads me to my next point…
6. Jam Out: Seriously, I don’t know how people exercise without amazing tunes to go with it. But I suppose if you aren’t an Ipod person, chatting with a friend, watching the TV at the gym, or listening to the surrounding noise helps—any distractions really! But if you’re like me, I like my jams, and lately I’ve been really feeling my newest playlist, “Workout Baby.”
I recently downloaded “I Like it” by Enrique Iglesias (feat. Pitbull) and absolutely love it. Actually that’s an understatement. Confession: I played it THREE times during my run this morning; that’s how obsessed with it I am. So, download some new tunes, have your hip, music-obsessed friend burn you a few CD’s. I’m telling you: new, upbeat songs can make all the difference during your next workout.
Hope this helps! Please share your personal motivating tips that help you charge through…