Perspective: How Divorce can Help you Build Healthy Habits for Life

One of the biggest reasons I came out of my own divorce, relatively intact, clear, focused and confidant, was because of the discipline I had developed while working with my own Personal Trainer.  Before I became a Trainer myself, I had a regimented schedule with a Trainer that allowed me to think and focus on me.  When I started with my Trainer, I was weak, physically and mentally, had never quite sketched out any goals, and didn’t know much about myself.  I committed to training three times per week, no matter what was happening.  As I physically grew stronger, I became mentally and emotionally stronger, more stable.  The anxiety I felt about decision making fell away.  The thing about working on yourself daily, is you can discover who you are over and over again.  These sessions help me track patterns of behavior that I had become stuck in, thinking that was limited and I learned that being uncomfortable was okay.  Comfort does not serve me.  Never will.

My training appointment became my therapy in many ways, and when divorce came knocking, I was ready.  I am not saying that it was easy, but I was ready.  I didn’t let the anxiety of the unknown grab hold of me.  I knew I was capable of anything I wanted to accomplish.  I just had to decide everyday, day after day, week after week, month after month and year after year. You may find yourself overwhelmed, full of doubt, fearful, anxious and uncertain.  divorce

Getting a divorce, even if you work with an ​Albany divorce lawyer​, can wreak havoc on your mental and emotional health, and even your physical health as well. Indeed, a divorce is extremely stressful, and the change of routine and the pressure of finding a place to live, making decisions about property and the kids, and learning how to be on your own can be extremely taxing. In addition to this, you may be experiencing feelings of self-doubt, inadequacy, and even self-loathing post-divorce. All of these stressors can not only leave you feeling bad and frazzled, but can also take a toll on your physical health as well, leading to weight gain, negatively affecting your immune system, and increasing your risk of disease.

Exercise Is Critical

To help you combat the negative emotions and physical consequences you may experience as a result of a divorce, exercise is the best medicine. Indeed, ​everyone should exercise on a regular basis regardl​ess of stress level, but for those dealing with a major life change, exercise can be an especially effective tool.

The benefits of exercise are myriad. Of course, there are the many ​physical benefits ​such as:

  • ●  Weight loss/maintenance;
  • ●  Reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases;
  • ●  Reduced risk of diabetes and metabolic syndrome;
  • ●  Reduced risk of cancer;
  • ●  Improved bone and muscle health;
  • ●  Improved mobility; and
  • ●  Improved chance of living longer.

    But in addition to physical benefits, there are a number of ​psychological benefits​ too. For those who are recently divorced or in the process of getting a divorce, exercise can help you to cope with stress and is a helpful and effective treatment for depression and anxiety. Exercise also leads to better sleep, improved thinking and cognitive benefits, enhanced mood, and increased serotonin and brain-derived neurotrophic factor. There is also research to support the idea that exercise improves self-efficacy and social interaction, perhaps because it combats low self-esteem and social withdrawal.

    Of c​ ourse, exercise helps you to ​look better too. In addition to weight loss, you may put on more muscle and have healthier looking skin and hair. When you look good, you feel good.

    Take Back Control through Self-Improvement

    When you feel good about yourself and your body, you have a healthier perspective and better outlook on life. The first ​step is realizing that ​you are in control, and that you have the tools and the opportunity to improve your physical and mental health after divorce. Through exercise, you can take back control.

A Personal Trainer Can Help

While exercise can leave you feeling great, it can be hard to know where to start. Getting outside for a walk is always a great basic, but if you want to do more, working with a personal trainer can be helpful. A personal trainer can customize an exercise routine for you that helps you to reach your fitness and health goals. A trainer also helps to hold you accountable and motivate you.

At Freestyle Fitness, we care about your health goals, both physical and psychological. If you have recently gotten divorced, we are here to support you on your journey to self improvement and empowerment. ​Contact us today online​ or by phone to learn more about our services today.

meme

The truth about high fat diets…from, yours truly.

 

 

We live in a sea of confusion.  Confusion over food, environment issues, relationships, career choice etc.  As a fitness studio owner and champion for good health, I have found myself confused for decades.  With diet trends like Paleo, Keto, Whole 30, Macro counting and a slew of others, why wouldn’t we be confused about what kinds of food constitute a “healthy” diet.  We have turned our back on carbs and are embracing the “healthy” fats of avocados and nuts like never before.  When did fat become the cool kid?

bacn eggs

I have been studying, experimenting with and researching, the diets listed above, for over 2 years.  By studying, I mean, understanding the theory behind the claims, by experimenting, I have tried and tracked each one for several months and by researching, I have looked for clinical evidence that would back up the claims of these diet giants.  Paleo and Ketogenic diets are of particular interest to me, as it seems I know many people adopting their programs.

Is there such thing as healthy fat? Does your body treat animal fat different than fat from plants? (ie.nuts, seeds etc)

healthy fats

Well, recently there has been many “revelations” about plant fat vs. animal fat.  Revelations, is a strong word.  The fact is, scientists have known for decades that consuming animal fat will put us at a higher risk for developing Coronary Artery Disease, while consuming fats from seeds, nuts, avocado’s etc, may have the opposite effect.  The difference is simple.  Animal fats contain saturated fat and Cholesterol, known to be the highway to heart disease, while plant fats offer multiple vitamins, polyphenols, and contain ZERO Cholesterol.

By no means, does this mean we should eat all the plant fats we can find, especially if you are diabetic, or have heart disease already.  Replacing your usual source of fat from animal to plant may be a good way to think about developing a new habit, but certainly not by adding more to your plate, just because plant fats are now deemed “healthy.”

Back to the high fat diet crazes that are sweeping the nation, just stop already!  Eliminating carbohydrates so you can stuff your face with fat will not improve your performance at the gym, it will not help you keep your arteries clear to pump blood efficiently, it will certainly not prevent any common diseases, it will not make you younger or deemed cooler, however here is what it will do:

“In one study, young, healthy subjects were put on a Paleolithic diet along with a Crossfit-based, high-intensity circuit training exercise program. As has been shown with exercise, stomach-stapling surgery—and tuberculosis and chemotherapy, for that matter—losing weight typically causes a drop in cholesterol levels no matter the diet. Researchers found the opposite in this case: After ten weeks of a Paleo diet with hard-core workouts and weight loss, participants’ LDL (bad) cholesterol levels rose and did so more dramatically in those who started the study the healthiest. Exercise is supposed to improve health and well-being, not compromise it.” Dr. Greger, author “How Not To Die” and Founder of NutritionFacts.Org

It really should be common sense,  that we should not give up on an entire food group in order to obsess over another one, just so we can chisel out our core and blend in with the crowd.  Complex carbohydrates, that are high in fiber and are completely devoid in high fat diets, are crucial in our diets to help aid in digestion and act as a pot scrubber along our artery walls.  Why on earth would we want to eliminate them?  To be very clear, complex carbohydrates will not make you fat.  Below is one of my teacher’s guide to foods that should be included in your diet daily to prevent disease, to aid in weight loss and feel great.   Do your homework before jumping into any “diet” program and think about long term effects of your choices.

dg daily

It is clear that if you are looking for vanity weight loss, any diet that you stick to will work, which makes it important to have a personal reason for your choice. If it is to “be more healthy” you may want to re-think the trending diets and get back to a food of whole foods, moderate plant fats, minimal animal proteins and loads of vegetables and fruit that you can see yourself eating for years to come.  Personally, I eat to improve my health, to create healthy gut bacteria, to prevent common disease, to have more energy, to extinguish counting macros and calories, from the fitness arena, to trust and listen to my body, and to help my clients and family follow suit.  If you are raising children, and they are watching you count, restrict, and obsess I challenge you to change your ways for their sake.

Statistics and Facts on Dieting and Disordered Eating.

Disordered eating is different than an eating disorder. A person who worries about their looks and as a result their eating patterns are disrupted, but does not have an eating disorder, might fall into this category.

  • 51% of girls 9 and 10 years old feel better about themselves when they are dieting (11).
  • A 2002 study of boys in grades 9 and 10 found that 4% of them reported anabolic steroid use. This shows that body preoccupation and efforts to change one’s body are concerns that affect both women and men (12).
  • 40% of girls in grade ten and 37% of girls in grade nine thought of themselves as being too fat. Of those students that were “normal weight” based on their BMI, 19% still thought that they were too fat, and 12% of the students admitted to trying to lose weight (13).
  • Body-based bullying can have a severe impact on a girls’ attitude and behavior. Girls who suffered teasing by members of their families were 1.5 times more likely to try binge eating and/or other dangerous weight-control methods within five years (14).
  • 91 % of women who were surveyed on a college campus had tried to control their weight by dieting, and 22% of them dieted “often” or all the time (15).
  • https://www.mirror-mirror.org/eating-disorders-statistics.htm

 

Food for thought..

 

xo

g

Go ahead and get away….re-ignite your inner fire!

If you do nothing for yourself, you will have nothing to give anyone else.  We can all get caught up in our day to days and forget that we still need time alone, time away and time to reflect upon the blessings we encounter everyday.  For the first time in years, I had that chance to just that in the magical destination of  Tulum, Mexico.  From the minute the plane touched down at Cancun International, I was ready to experience all Mexico had to offer.  Even though I stayed in a chic boutique hotel on the beach, I was able to head into the City Center one evening and really feel Mexico.  Eat their traditional cuisine,  their street food and have one of my best friends along with me for the adventure.  There’s something about travelling with your girlfriend that makes a trip like this so memorable.  Alone time is a must also,  and having a friend or partner who allows you space is a precious gift.   I am lucky to have many of those people in my life now.

No trip to the beach would be complete without workouts to banish the evidence of all the taquitos and tequila, so I hit the only gym on the beach that utilized dumbells made from wood.  It was like working out with the Flintstones, only with the most fantastic view a girl could ask for.  They had some medicine balls, a push sled, monkey bars, paralettes, squat racks, wooden benches for any chest pressing, and whole lot of people watching going on.  The Jungle Gym of Tulum was just what I needed to get lost in my own workout for a change. https://tulumjunglegym.com/

It didn’t bother me one bit that several people would stop and stare to get a glimpse into the area and check things out.  I am usually so focused on creating workouts and nutrition plans for clients, I don’t get the chance often to workout for myself.  Even when I take our amazing classes at my studio, I am still a trainer, still making sure everybody is working, feeling good, pushing and correcting.  The trainer in me never turns off.  I know that sounds ridiculous, but I am a giver.  I give to others first, sometimes crushing my goals instead of CRUSHING my goals, know what I mean??!! .  That is a danger in this field that several trainers and instructors face and I recognize when that begins to happen.    Time away from serving others is a good thing.  It allows pondering, assessing, reflection, and new habits to be formed.  I loved working out, for me, in front of the turquoise water, white sand, breezy air, in my new lululemon’s (and I do not get paid to say that) and allowing myself to feel my breath, to focus on the quality of movement, slow things down…after all, I had no where to be, no one to see and my presence was enough!

gina tulum ab shot

gina flyingI also had the chance to take a yoga class, under a palapa, waves crashing behind me, cool breeze blowing, sun shining, and a wonderful instructor who had just the right amount of challenge, breath work and posture work to make me revel in my own sweat puddle after class.  I was there…there for me….there to experience what my instructor had to share, no trainer thoughts ran through my mind.  My excessive criticism of other instructor’s was completely shut down.  My excessive criticism bleeds through when I am being an asshole.  I actually love taking other trainers and instructors classes.  I respect their knowledge, experience and personality, most of the time.  When I am being an asshole, I allow myself to feel jealous, envious, weak, needy, bitchy, gossipy, not good enough, not in shape enough, not funny enough, not a good enough friend, not a good enough mom, etc….I am an asshole and I look at the world with critical lenses.  GROSS!!!!  Then, I pull myself together and stop that shit!!

But none of that was there, all that was there was admiration, respect, gratitude and a deeper connection to my thoughts and actions.   I felt refreshed, renewed confidant that the path I am on is the right one.  I just needed a second to breath, re-focus, to re-light the flame that makes me want to be better everyday.  FOR ME.   Time away with friends, alone time, mommy time, self care, whatever you want to call it, is much needed.  Schedule time for you, I promise you will never regret it….

xo

G

My 5 day detox with the Super Model of all Meal Delivery Services:

For those of you that keep up with me and my lifestyle choices, you know that great nutrition is on my top 5 List as far as priorities go.  Family, career, fitness and fun are my other 4.   I have tried all sorts of cleanses in the past, juicing, detox teas, smoothies etc.  and they have all come up short for me. This time of year we are bombarded with all sorts of claim to fame products that will increase our energy, focus, sex drive, digestion and make us leaner.  I eat alot of veggies and minimal amounts of animal proteins, on the daily.  I do not take supplements, only a some raw Manuka honey and Collagen protein.    I am not endorsed by any company to sell or market their products.  I think it’s important to know all of that before I get into the “why” of the detox.    My intention with trying any of these programs is always to seek more energy, help rid myself of any bad habits and to keep my mind open to new possibilities of food as medicine.  Being a professional in the Fitness and Health Field, I believe puts me on the front line of “testing” methods, ideologies and claims.  If you’re trainer is not talking to you, and educating themselves continually, about nutrition and lifestyle, find a new trainer.  Workouts don’t mean a thing if you don’t have proper knowledge about your bodies needs, how it works and the link between nutrition and overall good health.

Anyway,  I tend to shy away from juicing, as I love to chew my food and because it is not sustainable for me.  Of course, if we all juiced all our meals, we would be inherently leaner, and our digestive track would take it easy, however, I am of the mind to want my body to “work” for me.  Stripping all the fiber from vegetables seems pointless, but that is just my opinion.  When I tried a juice cleanse, several years back, I didn’t last two days.  It was supposed to be 5 days.  I hated drinking my food,  the green juice was awful, I was exhausted and I couldn’t seem to stay focused.   This time I had a deeper purpose and more knowledge about what to look for in a program.

While researching food as medicine, I enrolled the help of one of my doctor clients who gifted me a book about the health of our guts and disease.  The more I researched, read, and experimented with food, it became clear to me that I was looking for a plant based service that offered ultra fresh, intelligently designed, and delicious food.  You know, the kind of food that when you look at it, you stop, you admire and you dive in!

sakara

SAKARA grabbed my attention  immediately as a “stand out” based on their brilliant marketing, their microbiome approach to better health and simply because it was real food that I could chew.  I wasn’t looking for a cleanse or detox per say, however, I was comparing plant based meal delivery services as a resource for my own clients and members.  When it comes to people changing habits, convenience is at the top of the list.  Let’s face it…prepping food can be tedious but that is only a small part of implementing an intelligent nutrition plan.  The research, planning, buying and prepping is no small feat and we now have the luxury of several meal services that will do all of that and deliver to your door.

Anyway, I hear and see people talk about juice cleanses, elimination diets and all sorts of methods to help them achieve a greater sense of self and health.  It has been years since I tried any such things, as I always research, plan and prep myself, so I welcome a company that has taken the time and thought to develop this service.   Below is my experience of what a 5 day detox, claiming to heal my gut, re-calibrate my hormones, and relieve any disease causing inflammation in body, is like.  What do I hope to get out of it?  Cut my caffeine intake and be rid of any stevia or truvia that I use daily in my coffee.  It is super important to know what you want to get out of any program in order to stick with it and to be able to measure your results.  And, I am all about creating a healthy microbiome to ensure my plant based efforts are building healthy gut flora!  In addition to breaking bad habits, I really needed a break from my own food prep.

Here we go…  My first two days of food, teas, broths, supplements and goodies arrived at my door the night before I began.  I had been sent two emails prior, with some tips on how to prepare to get the max benefits of the program.  I def appreciated the notes and support.  I eat really clean usually, lots of greens, fermented foods, fiber rich foods, water and minimal organic animal proteins, however I just returned from a private retreat I hosted in Mexico the week prior.  Can you say taquitos???!!! So many tacos….so little time!  And then, Superbowl Sunday happened, so I was a little nervous about going all in but I did anyway…

 

package arriving sakara
Just unpacked the first two days of food from SAKARA.

I know what you’re thinking….How much does all this cost?  Obviously, different companies charge various amounts.  A 5 Day Detox Program from Sakara will run you approx. $99 per day.  Will it be worth it?  Let’s find out.

This was as tasty as it looked.  So fresh and the flavors were on point.  You know I love to cook and worked in restaurant kitchens for over 20 years and I love when food tastes as it should…simple, fresh and not overly done! Before I ate this, upon waking, I drank 16oz of detox water that Sakara also provides. Breakfast was a Root Veggie bowl, a cup of digestive tea and some essential amino acid supplements.  DELISH!! I ate slowly, savored the flavors and had some quiet time to re-establish my intentions for the detox.

sakara lunch 2
Lunch was soooooo goooood!!

 

I cruised into lunch feeling good, reminding myself to drink some water.  If there is one  thing I lack, it’s water.  I get busy teaching class, on the computer etc. and before you know it, hours go by and no water.  I wanted to make sure I got the most of this program and more water was at the top my list.  This was a a good eye opener and the big kick in the ass I needed to drink more water.  I mean, I tell all my clients that, so no excuse.

Mid Afternoon was a coconut kefir for a valiant dose of probiotics and dinner was a medicinal broth with MCT oil to ease digestion through the night.  I had another dose of probiotics and an evening pack of supplements  to aid in absorption of nutrients and digestion.  The supplements were easy to take, I do not really know how much our bodies absorb supplements and they are not part of my daily routine, however, I loved that the extra support was through for my busy life.

coconut kefir

Days 1.2 and 3 were similar as far as food, kefir, supplements and broth.  Let’s talk about how I was feeling.  What I can tell you for sure is, you need to have a specific goal, reason or a few to keep in your sight.  I told you a few of my “why’s” above but day 2 revealed something else.  As a mom of two, I am busy in the kitchen early morning to prep breakfasts, lunches and dinners, and what became clear to me by Day 2, was just how much I snack while in the kitchen.   I lick the peanut butter knife, I eat a handful of fishies, slices of fruit that my kids leave on their plate, the doubled up sticky clusters of honey nut Cheerios, an occasional bag of gummies that got left behind in my car, AND I drink coffee like a motha fucka!!! Coffee, coffee, coffee…DAMN! Now, I didn’t go about this detox to GIVE-UP coffee, OH HELL NO!! What I did do was drink only one cup, without the truvia, while I detoxed for 5 days.  Of course, the company recommends ditching it, but I do what I want!!  LOL  Joking….but really.

My reasons for doing the detox, were on my mind all the time.  True mindfulness, when you are surrounded by distractions, allows you to conquer any obstacle that may be in your path.  My energy was good day 1-3, I did not work out hard, just moved a bit in my mobility class, did a little reformer work but mostly wanted my body to focus on the detox process. I sipped many digestive teas, that Sakara provided, throughout the day and evening to keep warm and satisfied.

Enter Day 4.  ALL LIQUIDS.  I din’t snap any photos because it was the day I was dreading.  Started the morning with a green drink, my morning pack of supplements and tea after. I had prepped myself mentally the night before, revisited my intention, took a hot shower and planned a full day of business.  I knew I had to stay busy and away from my house.  Home is where my comfort is. The cabinets are filled with crunchy bits, the couch is cozy and the mindless t.v. machine is just waiting for the chew fest to begin.  I packed all my soups, green drinks, broths, and supplements and headed to the studio.  I understand my weakness’s very well and did not want to sabotage the 3 days I already had under my belt so I worked all day.  I have to say, I wasn’t really hungry, I did want to chew a hot dinner though.  I arrived home later in the evening, heated my broth, sipped on my tea and went to sleep.  In between all of that, I still had to be mom, make dinner, referee bickering and braid some girl hair.  That’s the thing, I allowed myself more presence to do the things that mattered.  To spend time braiding girl hair, doll hair, ribbons a plenty and whatever else my little girl wanted me to braid was a great “side effect” of allowing myself more time by not having to add hours in my kitchen, prepping.  Staying busy doesn’t  have to mean being “busy” it can mean staying “present” and allowing yourself to be all in with no distraction.  That was an “ahhhhhhaaaa” moment for me.

The End of Day 4 for me was epic!  I had great energy, had been sleeping good, waking up with energy, and focused on all the important things to me.  It was the furthest I had ever gotten following a plan, other than the one’s created by myself.  I was ready for breakfast.

Enter Day 5:  FOOD!!!

I sat down to eat, took my time, swallowed my morning pack of supps, drank my digestive tea and planned a day with the kids.  It was Sunday, which is Pancake Sunday at my house, and Shawn, my beloved, makes amazing pancakes!  We always make them from scratch, Rolled Oats, Almond Milk, egg whites, some protein powder, wild blueberries etc. and the smell while they are sizzling on the griddle fills the house!!  I def. wanted one but was satisfied with my breakfast.  Smells can make you loose your mind sometimes.  Distinct smells can take you for a stroll down memory lane, they can trick you into feeling something that isn’t even real, like hunger after you just ate.  The process of detox allows you to focus on feelings of satiation, your energy, and it can help re-establish our childhood patterns of eating until we are satisfied, not full.   That is yet, another lesson I learn daily as I watch my children eat.  They play between bites, talk, always put their forks down and allow their bodies signals to communicate to their brain that they are satisfied.   It’s amazing to witness over and over.

We decided to take the kids to the movies after lunch.  Lunch for me was a bowl of greens, seeds, and things that I wilted in a skillet, as I wanted something warm.  The movies are another trap for us with the  popcorn popping, butter smelling, candy crunching crazies at the movies!!  I mean, that’s what I do at the movies anyway.  I knew it would be impossible for me to forego the salty deliciousness but I was determined and on Day 5.  So, I grabbed a little snack bag and tossed in a couple handfuls of sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds to savor while the popcorn addicts devoured every kernal of crunchy corn in my ear.  Well, at least that what it seemed like.  Haha.  Truth be told, it was not hard for me to sit with my baggie and snack on some seeds.  I drank alot of water and listened to my body, not my brain trying to trick me.

Dinner was great, I heated my macro bowl of massaged greens and japanese pumpkin, beans with an avocado shiso dressing.  Kids and Shawn had plant based pasta with some grass fed organic meat sauce  I made that for them, but actually had no desire for meat or heavy food in my belly.   Now, I am not really a vegan, I dabble is all sorts of labeled foodie groups, but I loved getting rid of any animal proteins during the process.  Once dinner was done, cleaned up, I hung with the fam, and thought about how I was able to manage my busy life, and kids all while experiencing a detox.   Most people hear “detox” and they think you are in some sort of chamber away from the World, curled up in the fetal position, sweating.  lol  This was hardly the case.   The Sakara Team sends two guides, one with tips on getting you through the detox and some great tips, recipes and ideas on how to proceed after.  Not to mention, every day I received an email, asking how I was feeling, common side effects, tips and encouragement.  Well played Sakara.  It was nice knowing  there was support if needed and there was an after detox plan.

Conclusion:  Is This detox worth the $$$$$ ?

The food is fresh, designed with a team of doctor’s who study gut health, and Bobby Flay, who, if you ask me,  is one of the best flavor makers in the business.  I crushed my goals, No sweeteners in my coffee, I cut way down on the coffee consumption and will keep up with that, I feel amazing.  I lost a little weight, which was not a priority for me, but felt leaner, lighter and am filled with focused energy.  My skin was hydrated, smooths and glowing.  I enjoyed 90% of the meals provided.  There was one breakfast, tons of mushrooms, which I typically love, that I could have done without.  The luxury of not having to think, prepare and execute my meals for 5 days had me feeling like a Celebrity.  For real though! For someone like me, busy taking care of everybody else’s health and fitness goals, creating intelligent meal plans, the endless hours of research and implementation can take away from my own goals.  Sakara was and is for me, an amazing option for when I need support and encouragement.   I am happy to know they exist and I never put a price tag on my priorities.  When somebody tells me that my studio is too pricey and not in their budget or they do not have the money for one on one coaching, I always come back to PRIORITIES!  I ask, “how many times per week do you eat out, how many Starbuck’s runs do you go on in a week, how much money is spent on junk food, how much do you spend drinking your wine,  getting your nails, lashes, laser’s, and  hair done, how many pairs of designer shoes do you own , what car you driving, and how much were those workout leggings again?”   I think you get my point…    We place so much value on the outside appearance, our look, that we don’t make our primary functions a priority anymore.  To me, there is nothing more important than preventing disease, moving better, feeling better, doing better and being a supreme role model for my children, so you probably know how I feel about the cost of this program.  It’s a non-issue.  I do not have tons of my money in my bank account, I do not drive a fancy car, sadly I do not own any designer shoes etc.  I put my money where my health is!! Period.  This was definitely worth it.  Would I do it again?  ABSOLUTELY!   This Blog post wasn’t just about the service Sakara provides, it is about assessing the things you place as priority in your life and how you go about fulfilling them.

Call me a crazy bitch, don’t care….My life, my rules, my way! Always!  If I have ever said, “I would never do a detox” in the past, I changed my mind. This was one helluva good learning experience.

 

sakara3

gina flying

So, You’re Telling Me That We Should Celebrate Tonya F**king Harding?

Did I miss something?  Didn’t this female athlete attack another female athlete for fear she may not get a prize for her efforts?  Didn’t she actually plan the bashing in of her opponent’s knee with a bat?  Didn’t she deny it and then plead guilty?  Didn’t she deliberately try to ruin another woman’s career?   I am sure you get the point here.   How, in all the fuck’s, did we get to this ?

Hollywood Idiots
Hollywood is FAKE!!! That is ALL!!! Why all the hand grabbing anyway?!?!

I am so confused about the status of who we are and what we value as a people, a nation and community.  Let’s face it, Hollywood is FUCKED UP!  We allow ourselves to attach to these, less than ideal humans, who are playing pretend.   Hollywood is NOT REAL.  The problem is, Hollywood has a huge impact on us, on the way we live, love, play, eat, dress, think, feel, work, etc.  Between this twat and the Kardashian sister’s, at times i feel hopeless for us.   It’s like we are moving backwards.   How did Tonya, the villain, become the hero in this story?  I’ll tell you….

I, Tonya

We, as a people, are curious AF by nature.  We learn everything by watching, We watch and we figure if this is acceptable, if that is not, and whether either is changeable. We feel connected to the world around us when we watch.  I have not seen this movie myself, and this is not a movie review, merely questions about what makes us want to watch this and what makes us want to like Tonya Harding.  When I say, “us” I mean the Hollywood assholes that are embracing her in the picture above and anyone else who can support this kind of shit.  I have zero tolerance for this woman and the fact that we are giving her more attention, praise and money is beyond my comprehension but I never claimed to be smart.

Tonya Is what we call a “social train wreck” and we really love to get comfy in our p.j’s, get a bowl of popcorn, our favorite blanket and watch this sort of stuff unfold before our eyes.   Watching O.J. try to outrun police after murdering his ex-wife, watching Brittany Spear’s shave her head and come undone, viewing our political “debates” this past year just waiting for something crazy, sexist, racist, ignorant, OHHHHH, and the facial expressions!! Meme’s are everywhere of every event that we deem unacceptable behavior.    I mean, we love juicy, tainted, perverted stories of other people’s poor decision making.  We just can’t help ourselves! Or can we?

voyeurism

I think, we like to watch because it’s a safe way to explore  some of our darker traits.  You know the ones, the one’s you don’t even tell your best girlfriend’s or husband or partner.  Heck, Hollywood BANKS on the fact that we like to watch, to be  immersed in a character so deep that you experience every emotion in 90-120 minutes all in the safety of your own living room.   I think this is why the story is exciting again.  We get to relive all the emotions and then some.  We all remember, and we all asked ourselves, “How could someone do this?”   This story takes you through the why and the how but most importantly,  it plays to a side we don’t like to admit is there.  I have wished for terrible things to happen to people who hurt me.  I have done that more than once. I have secretly, of course, thought how my life could be different if it weren’t for this obstacle or that.  The difference is, these are fleeting thoughts risen from fear, with no plan of action.  Just thoughts.   When someone acts on those thoughts, the story has emerged and is what we are attached to.  We can’t believe someone could carry out our most twisted thoughts so, of course we have to watch!!

I say, some things are not worth reliving or revealing.  Fine, you want to watch, but do we need to make a spectacle of this woman again?   Do we need to forgive her? Will we ever even know the real truth?  Is this all for money,  publicity and fame?  I can’t answer any of that for you, it’s just something to think about.  We create what we want our world to be like with everything we do everyday.   Every thought that crosses our mind, every word that leaves our lips, every action we take daily, the food we choose to eat, the business’s we choose to support and the millions of things we WATCH everyday.

Watch to be smart…watch to be helpful…watch to seek to be better…watch for your future. Stop watching this B.S.

xo

G

How to “Un-Fuck” Yourself for Life in 3 Steps

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How many times have things happened in your life and you thought or said aloud, “I am SO FUCKED!, Fuck MY Life, Fuck this, etc.  I think you get the picture. I say, think or feel this at times of frustration, anger, disappointment, hurt, or habit. I think that cursing is something that many of us use to express emotions without physically reacting to others actions, or our own thoughts and fears.   We may view others actions as a personal attack and one of our quickest and sharpest defense mechanisms is our tongue. Sometimes we verbally express this, sometimes our body language reveals it, and sometimes we say it over and over in our own heads as to not hurt the person you feel hurt by.  Anyway,  the way we think about ourselves and speak to ourselves has a direct impact on how we will handle future conflict, how we navigate obstacles real or perceived, and how we interact with the world around us.

So how do we get out of our own head and re-direct the negative energy that sometimes fills us to the brim?   I have listed 3 important steps to help re-direct, reconnect and re-establish a positive mind set to conquer all the fear filled chatter in our heads!

Step 1.  Know THINE SELF Motha Fucka!! (Insert Samuel L. Jackson voice)

You can’t possible try to shift a shitty attitude or try to adjust your perception if you have no clue who you are, why you are and where you want to be.  We are all born with a certain temperament.  This is our animal nature, referred to as our disposition, character, make-up, personality, spirit etc.  For simplicity, we can narrow this down to tow different types.  I highly recommend the book, “The Dance of the Lion and the Unicorn” by Mark Waller, PHD.  and psychotherapist.   He breaks this down in great detail and is easy to understand. Calm the fuck down, we all need a good psychotherapy session every now and again and if you think you don’t, you are more fucked up than you know or care to admit. You don’t have to experience a tragedy or betrayal to do self-work and practice self-love.  It is a process to commit to for life.  Just sayin….

Mark breaks compares our temperament to that of two different types of animals.  One real, the lion and the mythical creature, the unicorn. Your temperament is the way you came into the World, before your parents fucked you up, before you had your hearts broken, before you lived in fear and before you even had the ability to reason.  I won’t get into the specifics here about the different characteristics of each however, you can begin to decipher by assessing your behavior when are faced with crisis or conflict.  Do you face challenge head on or do you typically retreat and avoid any conflict?  Understanding this will help you discover patterns of behavior that may be keeping you from the Rockstar you want to be.  I will let you guess which animal I mostly relate to.  I do believe we are all born with this gift and it is our job to harness it’s powers, strengthen the areas we may be lacking in and to find the balance between the Lion and the Unicorn.   I highly recommend checking out his book and you can find it on the side bar>>>>>>

Step 2.  Unlearn Everything you Think you Knew. *Note: you must do step 1 in order to do step 2.

Once you figure out your natural state, you will then be able to hold your values, beliefs and principles up for inspection.  You can begin to determine whether your values were taught to you,  handed down from family,  or observed from media or society.  Just because something is socially acceptable does not mean you have to go along or agree.  Our job is to question all of it guys!  Where do you get you news from?  What is filling your social media pages?   What are you gossiping about with your girlfriends?  We have a very skewed view of what is real and truth and what is made up.  Approaching every aspect of your life this way is vital in order to change the way you actually think.   When you feel yourself revert back to old thinking patterns that didn’t serve you, you must be able to flip the switch, remove your emotions, breathe, and put a fresh set of spectacles on.  None of this is easy….it’s not supposed to be.  Comfort is a job for your pillows and your mattress.  Your job is never stop discovering new.  One of mentors, Cameron Shayne says it best, “Comfort the Disturbed and Disturb the Comforted”.  That is how I approach clients, friends, family and myself everyday.  Having a good ole honest friend who can deliver you a dose of reality and keep your story in check while managing to be kind in the process is a blessing.  All you have to do, is be honest, really honest and you won’t want to live any other way.  I don’t always get it right.  Often times I am afraid of what people will think if I am completely myself and honest about what I think.  I am also afraid to hurt people’s feelings, that I may disturb them and cause pain.  That is when a little finesse comes in.  You can still be honest, hold your ground and be yourself without harming anyone.   This is why it is important to evaluate your beliefs.  If you know why you believe in something, there will be no question when it comes time to defend that belief. You will be able to articulate your position while allowing other points of view to not disturb you.

Step 3. Non-Attachment

The suffering we feel, the hurt we have experienced and the times  we think the World is taking a royal shit on us happen when we set up an expectation and attach meaning to it. For instance,  you loose your job, you lover leaves you with no explanation, your friend didn’t show up when you needed her/him, your boss is being an asshole and asked you to stay late and you have plans, whatever the day throws at you, seems to disturb your peace.  It’s as if these people and situations are trying to sabotage your life.  At least it can feel that way.  The truth is, nobody has the power over you to make you feel anything.  We choose the pain, and we choose the medication.  Meaning, first we have an emotional reaction, and it’s visceral…your heart races, you sweat, your fists clench etc.  We allow our emotions to override all common sense and then our ego will administer the meds.  Your ego will lash out, or retreat, and your usual defense mechanisms rear their ugly heads.  We are so attached to the outcome of situations that we often forget that we set those expectations ourselves.  We make that shit up !! Chances are, nobody is out to get you, nobody wants to hurt you purposely, and nobody wants you to suffer.  Only a real asshole wants that…and we don’t need to talk about them.

The minute we can let go of the end game and learn to enjoy and navigate our own path we can begin to feel what it’s like to live in the present, without fear of the future while letting go of the past.  I work on this continually, some days I am good at it and some days I gargle toilet water and pull the covers over my head.  I just keep trying to be better than yesterday…

These are just a few of my thoughts…like it or not, I am not attached to how you may feel about it.  In fact, each of you will perceive and react to this differently, as it should be! It just IS !! Just be YOU! Don’t take yourself too seriously.

Oh and remember, it’s all made up anyway!

xo

G

 

 

A Day in the Life…What I eat, drink, do and think in a day.

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This was my day, yesterday January 3rd 2018.

  • 5:30 Wake Up (if I want to shower, brush my teeth and have a little privacy in the bathroom before my kids wake up, however,  if I’m willing to give that up, I sleep until 6am, rush around like a maniac and subject my children to mom boobs floppin and whole lot of not so silent f-bombs flyin…

So……I love my alone time and so many days the early morning is the only chance I get to set the tone for my day.  I wish I could tell you that I meditate every morning before I  start my day, but that would be bullshit.  I have tried several times to take that up in the morning but I am never consistent.  I wake up and literally begin to organize my day in the shower.  Some of my best ideas and fitness classes are born in the shower as I scrub the suds off and use every drop of hot water my tank allows.  LOL.  Something about hot running water creates space for ideas to flow freely while I am in a relaxed state.

  • 6am-7:10am is spent in the kitchen, between kids rooms, bathrooms, breakfast and lunch making for two picky eaters and packing bags, backpacks, and whatever else the day may require for extracurricular, after school activities like dance class, drum lessons, math tutors etc. I know you moms get it and some of you dads too.  But let’s face it, moms are efficient  AF  and we have certainly earned our PHD in the school of multi-tasking!

As far as breakfast goes for me….I push my breakfast until about 11am.  While I prepare my kids lunches, I am also at the stove cooking up my breakfast that I will take with me and eat the studio after morning classes.

I would not survive my morning of wasn’t for my COFFEE!  Here’s what I love in my coffee:

  1.  Brew the strongest, most bad ass coffee you can find.  Death Wish is my fav and is roasted local
  2.  Add 1 Scoop Collagen Protein
  3. Steam and froth Fresh, Organic Almond or Cashew Milk
  4.  Stir it up, drink it down and repeat if necessary!
coffee
I use the Frother on my Breville Creatista Espresso Machine to do this. I have also used a plug-in milk steamer and that works great too!

 

Bulletproof_Collagen_Protein
I like the Bulletproof Brand and Vital Proteins when it comes to collagen. The vital proteins offers collagen derived from sea creatures in addition to cow for those of that are staying away from all meat .
  • 7:10 am hits and we are out the door.  I pack the two kids up and drive them to two different schools in opposite directions.  This commute takes anywhere between 1 hour and 1 hour and a half every morning.  Why do I do this when we have  busing available?   I decided about 8 years ago, when I separated from my son’s father, that no matter how busy life was, how busy my schedule got, that I would always make time to really talk and listen to my kids.  Because, my schedule is so crazy and I am not home much for family dinners during the week, the car rides to school have become the  gateway to discovering who my children are.  We sing, talk, cry, laugh and it really is the highlight of my day.  Don’t get me wrong, sometimes it all goes to shit and I am clenching the steering wheel and grinding my teeth as my kids blame each other for hideous smell coming from one of their butts!! AHHHHHH can you smell it???
  • 8:30 am – 2:30 pm   Once I arrive at the studio, depending on the day, my roles vary.  Sometimes I am teaching classes, personal training clients, meeting with nutrition clients,  cleaning toilets, mopping floors, creating classes, working out, answering emails, handling all administrative work, client and member needs, creating marketing campaigns, creating new recipes, filming workouts, researching, and really the list goes on.  I also bake grain-free, zero sugar, low carb bread for private clients with special diets once a week.  At approx. 11 am I eat.. Here is what breakfast looks like today:
breakfast
Egg Whites, broccoli, pickled beets, an apple and Peanut Butter. I dip my egg whites in ketchup. Reminds me of french fries!!
  • 2:30 – 4 pm I do it all again and pick up the kids at each school, drop them where they need to be and head out again back to the studio.  Some days, I am home helping with homework before I head back and some days home doesn’t happen again until 8 or 9 pm.  When Shawn can help out, he does.  He is an amazing dad!  His schedule is so jam packed that he leaves the house at 4:30 am and doesn’t arrive home until 8 pm, so we have our hands full.

I definitely eat again between 3 and 4 pm.  I am obsessed with beets right now, so when I have them in the house I try to make sure to use them anyway I can.  This is something I either I prepped in the morning or I would put together and eat home.  I always have sweet potatoes and veggies ready for any meal.  I prep those on Sunday.  Here’s a lunch jam packed with vitamins, minerals and all the right macro nutrients as well.

lunch
Sweet Potato Wedge smothered in homemade black bean hummus, sauteed spinach, topped with fresh sprouts, and more beets!
  • 4:30 – 8 pm Back to the studio for more teaching, creating, sharing, posting, handling, and laughing.  I do have the best job ever.  The thing with that is this: I was not happy living someone else’s dream.  I had to dream for myself, get to know who I was, do a lot of self work, learn what my boundaries are, asses my values and beliefs, and figure out the woman, mom, lover and partner, sister, daughter and friend I wanted to be.   I failed over and over again. I made the same  damn mistakes  over and over until I changed my habits, the way I talked to myself and the way I thought about the world.  Everything we do matters, all the time and even the smallest changes make a huge difference.

 

  • 8:30 pm I finally get home, eat my dinner, get the kids to bed, clean up, organize for the morning and finally sit on the couch, usually with laptop in hand checking the last emails and falling asleep on Shawn as he catches up on Netflix!  Last night I forgot my laptop at the studio, which was actually great for a change.

Last Night I didn’t get home until 9:30 pm, due to some snow and I picked up a few extra classes in order to keep my staff safe and home during the storm. Also, Thursday nights at the studio have a different energy and often times after classes, we catch up with each other, discuss relationships, careers, fears, and we celebrate our success’s together. Shawn had made some salmon at home so I ate a little piece of that with peanut butter and jelly slathered on Ezekiel Sesame Toast when I arrived home.  Not the best combo but it was the best I could do after a long day.  Kids were already in bed, I hate that.  I really like to see them before they go to sleep but sometimes life is like that and it’s okay.

dinner
Dinner doesn’t have to be extravagant, time consuming or even make sense all of the time. Give yourself a break once in a while and accept that nothing will ever be perfect or even resemble sanity on any given day.

 

I should tell you, I only ate the salmon knowing Peanut Butter was at the end !  LOL  Seriously, I hated every bite of that fuckin’ fish, but ate it for the nutrition, the PB and J was my dessert and I savored every bite!!

I didn’t make mention of any workout that I did yesterday because that didn’t happen either.  I taught several classes, demonstrated various movements,  threw some weights around to set up and clean up classes so that was the extent of my workout.   I accomplished some major work in my office, am re-designing my website and went to sleep exhausted knowing that I put in a long, hard days work.  At the end of the day I feel really good about the work I did !

Today, I will workout, eat more food, and try to go to bed by 10 pm.  We’ll see how that goes…

 

xo

G