Monthly Archives: August 2015

Amplify Results With This ONE Thing

I Wanna Go Fast!

When starting a new fitness program, whether it be to lose weight, tone up, feel better, build muscle, etc., we all want results fast.  We can all expect a noticeable transformation to take time, but that doesn’t mean our desire for quick results just goes away.

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I also prefer that immediate gratification.  While lasting changes do take time and consistent practice, there is one thing you can do to help speed up the process.

I’m not talking about exercising and eating properly.  That’s an obvious given.  That one EXTRA thing you can do to get better results, faster is this:

Stretch!

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Stretching in the morning and in the evening can amplify your results a number of ways.

  1. It increases your mobility.  Consistent stretching allows your body to have a conversation with your nervous systems, telling them that it’s OK to allow greater range of motion.  Gentle and intentional stretching allows your tissues to lengthen over time (or maintain length), which will not only keep you performing daily tasks more comfortably, but you’ll also perform more effectively in your workout.
  2. It improves digestion.  Gentle stretches can help treat a variety of digestive woes.  Constipation, bloating, and cramping are just a few of the discomforts that can be eased with stretching.  Better digestion allows improved nutrient absorption, increased energy, better posture and improves your mood.  If you’re grumpy…you might be constipated.  Of course, if you’re experiencing chronic digestive problems, check with your doc.  It could be a symptom of a more serious issue.

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          One of my favorite stretches for digestion is Revolved Triangle pose. Lengthening the torso and adding a gentle twist through the low belly can act as a subtle massage through the digestive organs,
           3.  It improves circulation.  Proper stretching can promote improved blood circulation.  Blood    carries oxygen and important nutrients to your muscles and organs.  This is vital to your daily performance (function, strength, movement, flexibility).  It also helps aid in faster recovery and the prevention of injury.
          There are countless benefits, both mental and physical, to stretching as a form of self care.  You don’t have to take my word for it.  Try it consistently for a few weeks and let me know if you notice a difference in how you look and feel.
            T-minus ONE day!
            Tomorrow is the Nutrition Overload kickoff!  Now that you’re stretching and absorbing nutrients at your bodies optimum potential, you need to start filling up your tank with the best ingredients.

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        If you haven’t stocked up on the ingredients you need for the #StrongCalmSmoothie challenge, just scroll on to the next post for the complete menu and shopping list.  As this month progresses, I’ll offer alternative and add ons to help you keep it fresh!
        Cheers to your fitness!

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Nutrition Overload: Green Drink Challenge!

What Just Happened?

Do you ever feel bloated, sluggish or uncomfortable?  Do you feel like you need to detox or just reset your system?  Do you want to feel more energetic, stronger and leaner?  Let’s go green together for the month of September!

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Challenge Accepted

Earlier this month I had a brief moment of insanity where I proclaimed that I would swap my coffee for a green drink or smoothie for the month of September.  You know I love these types of “experiments”, but you cannot just dive blindly into something like this.  It requires a plan.  For any of you wanting to join me, you’re welcome to design your own plan, but if you’d rather not be the responsible party, just follow mine 🙂  There are a few things to consider before committing to this plan.

1) You’ll need a blender.  I bet most of you have one.  It doesn’t have to be a fancy one.  I will be using a Cuisinart that I’ve had for years.  I think it was around $100 at Costco.  If you have a high powered blender like a Vitamix or Blendtec, then fabulous!  Your smoothies will blend to perfection every time with nary a lump.  If you’re in the same boat as me, just blend it twice if you miss a few chunks.

2) You will want a juicer.  My juicer was also very inexpensive.  I’ve had it for over 10 years.  It was $60 at Bed, Bath and Beyond.  The brand is Waring Pro.  It works great and something like this is good enough to serve the purpose if you’re just trying juicing for the first time.  If you do have one of the high powered blenders listed above, you may want to blend instead of juice.  It’s a personal choice really.

3) I’ll try to keep it simple.  You and I may not have the same opinion as to what “simple” is, but I will try to keep the shopping lists simple enough to where most any supermarket will carry what you need.

4) Make it your own plan.  I’m providing a specific plan, but feel free to make swaps.  I don’t know what your food allergies or aversions are, so take the liberty to adjust accordingly.

The [Bendable] Rules:

  1. Each morning, upon waking: Have a tall glass of water.  Add lemon if you’d like.  For more on the benefits of this “rule” click here.
  2. About 30 minutes after you’ve had your water, enjoy your smoothie or juice of the day.  If the menu called for a juice, you’ll have breakfast a short time after (and I will offer a few suggestions).  If the menu calls for a smoothie, the smoothie will also act as your breakfast.  You can resume your normal eating schedule with your first snack or lunch.
  3. Skip the caffeine.  I love coffee.  I drink it everyday.  It does have it’s health benefits.  However, it’s easy to increase the quantity over time until you are depending on it for energy that your body should be able to produce on it’s own.  I strongly encourage the occasional caffeine cleanse.  This can help you discover just how dependent you are on caffeine.  It can help you reset healthier sleep patterns.  It can allow your adrenal system to do it’s job more effectively (especially if you suffer from adrenal fatigue).  It can also help you stay more hydrated.  You’ll naturally sip on more water throughout the day, plus you won’t be drinking beverages that have a diuretic affect.
  4. Floss.  This is the last rule and the one I want you to bend the least.  This may already be a daily habit for you.  That’s great.  But if it’s not, you may be wondering what this has to do with a  smoothie challenge.  Practicing oral health habits like flossing actually improves your overall health, not just the condition of your teeth.  The purpose of this challenge is to increase overall nutrient absorption for increased energy and overall health.  Plaque built up on the gum line can lead to gum disease, which can lead to heart disease, diabetes and other issues we’d rather just avoid.  So, if it’s already a habit, keep it up.  If it’s not, add it to your morning (or nighttime) routine.

Now, The Recipes!

I’m going to give you 7 different recipes (one for each day of the week).  You’ll repeat this for 4 weeks.  As you go through the first week of the challenge, you can make tweaks to help perfect the recipes to your own palate.  I’ve been juicing for years and am accustomed to beverages that aren’t sweet.  You may need to ease into the “greener” options if you aren’t used to it.  With that being said, I have tried to put together combinations that are nutritious and delicious.  After all, I do like you and want you to enjoy this experience 🙂

DAY 1

We’ll ease into day one with a classic smoothie that’s filling and delicious.  It will help eliminate bloating, aid in digestion and leave you satisfied until your next planned meal.  I suggest you slice and freeze some bananas, because they allow you to avoid adding ice to your smoothie and will keep your bananas fresher longer.

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Ingredients:

1/2 frozen banana

2/3 cup frozen pineapple chunks

2 handfuls baby spinach (or 3/4 cup frozen)

1 cup coconut water (no sugar added)

6 oz plain (grass fed 2%) greek yogurt. I recommend Siggi’s brand.

1 TBSP milled flaxseed (or chia seed if you don’t have flaxseed)

Directions:

Toss it into the blender and blend until smooth.

Strong Calm Sneak: Reserve a few slices of the solid ingredients (banana slices, pineapple and a dusting of flaxseed) to top the smoothie with.  This will give you something to spoon and chew before you sip your smoothie.  The chewing action stimulates your stomach to produce necessary digestive enzymes and also allows your brain to release Leptin (the hormone that tells you you’re full).

DAY 2

On day 2 we’ll juice.  This is an energizing and refreshing juice that should go down pretty easily.  If you’re a StrongCalmSexy.com member (or get private meal plans from me) then you know how much I love green apples.  Here’s what you’ll need:

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1 Granny Smith Apple

4 romaine leaves

2 cucumbers

8 mint leaves

1 lime

Directions:

Run these ingredients through your juicer and enjoy ASAP.  About 30 minutes after your juice (give the nutrients time to absorb), you can enjoy a light, nourishing breakfast.  I recommend following it up with 1-2 eggs with some tomato slices or a slice of toasted Ezekiel bread with almond butter and cinnamon.

Day 3

Back to a breakfast worthy smoothie.  This one calls for a serving of protein powder.  My top recommendation is Tera’s Whey (the organic, grass fed variety).  There is also a website called Swanson’s Vitamins that carries their own grass fed whey protein concentrate.  It’s less expensive (about $16) and just as good, so if you have time to order it, then go for it!  You can also use a vegan protein if you prefer it.  I’ve told you before, my favorite vegan protein is from Arbonne.  I’ve yet to find one that blends better and doesn’t taste “beany”.

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Ingredients:

1/2 small avocado (peeled, pitted, cubed)

2/3 cup frozen mango (this will save you time and mess)

1 peeled kiwi

1 serving vanilla protein powder (recommendations above)

1 cup water or unsweetened almond milk.

Directions:

Blend it.  Drink it.

Day 4

Another smoothie day!  This is our super-est of all of the superfood smoothies.  We’ve packed them all in here for the most powerful nutrient punch.

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Ingredients:

1 cup raspberries

1/2 cup wild blueberries

1/2 banana (can substitute 3 pitted dates)

1 TBSP cocoa powder or raw cacao

1 TBSP Peanut Butter (natural, organic-even better)

1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk or grass fed milk

2 handfuls mixed greens

Directions:

Blend & Enjoy.  Remember, you can top with fresh berries or banana slices for something to chew.

Day 5

Back to juice.  This one is about as fresh as fresh can taste, but probably not for beginners 🙂  If you need to replace the 1/2 of the carrots with a small apple it will sweeten it up quite a bit.

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Ingredients:

5 small carrots

1 large cucumber

A few handfuls of cilantro

A few handfuls of kale

1 lemon

Directions:

Run these through the juicer and sip away 🙂  Remember, about 30 min later to have a simple breakfast with just a few ingredients.  Even a handful of walnuts with a few dried apricots will suffice.

Day 6

(serves 2)

This is like having pecan pie for breakfast.  It’s filling and energizing, so use this fuel for good and not evil.  Think about getting a good workout in after this smoothie (like completing an 8 Minute Meltdown, or 2 or 3).

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1/2 cup whole, rolled oats (non GMO and organic are preferred)

1/4 cup pecans

4 pitted dates

6 oz Siggi’s 0% plain greek yogurt

2 handfuls of spinach (or 1 cup frozen)

1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk

several dashes of cinnamon

If you don’t use frozen spinach, add some ice

Directions:

Blend and enjoy this creamy, smoothie pie!

Day 7

Let’s finish strong with a juice that tastes like we really care about our health.  This is one that you’ll end up craving someday…I promise 🙂  I’ll need selfies shared with your reaction when you give this one a try for the first time 🙂

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Ingredients:

1 bulb of fennel

1 Swiss Chard leaf

1 orange

1/2 lemon

1 handful of mint

Directions:

Run through the juicer and enjoy!  Follow up with a satisfying breakfast about 30 minutes later.  I recommend a serving of steel cut oat topped with orange zest, sunflower seeds and some flaked coconut.

Support:

I’ll be going through this with you, so we can share opinions and ideas.  If I decide to make tweaks, I will let you know.  I intend to still drink some green tea, so I will be getting some caffeine from that.  I will being trying different teas and tea lattes in lieu of coffee and espresso. I’ll share with you what I consider to be share worthy.  I’ll also be going through the workouts that are on the website and I’ll be adding some new 8 Minute Meltdowns if you’d like to add more activity to your day.  I’d love for you to share pics and comments of your experience on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, etc.  Use the hashtags: #StrongCalmSmoothie #StrongCalmSmoothieChallenge #8MM #8MinuteMeltdown and you can tag me on Instagram and Twitter @omnoshedidnt and if you don’t already “like” my Facebook page, you can like it at www.Facebook.com/StrongCalmSexy 

Feel free to forward this challenge to your friends and family and refer them to the site or to the social media pages.

Cheers!

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Bonus juice!  My all time fave! Broccoli stem, ginger, lemon, pear, cucumber and kale 🙂

The List:

Your shopping list may seem lengthy at first, but note that most all of these items can be frozen.  You’ll want the produce you are juicing to be as fresh as possible, but even the greens can be frozen for the smoothies.  Some of the items have a long shelf or refrigerator life (like the dates, oats, cocoa, flaxseed, etc.)  The green apples and citrus are also pretty hearty.  If you over buy, the chard can been cooked down for dinner and salads can be made out of any leftover greens and herbs.  These are all nutritious staples to have around, so buy a little extra and freeze what you can’t use right away.

Here is a summary of what you’ll need (I tried to categorize for your convenience):

Almond Milk

Coconut Water (no sugar added)

Plain Greek Yogurt (recommendations above-vegans swap for dairy alternative)

Vanilla Protein Powder (recommendations above)

Flaxseed (milled or mill it on your own in a coffee bean grinder or food processor)

Organic Rolled Oats

Cocoa Powder or Raw Cacao

Pecans

Dates (pitted)

Baby Spinach

Mixed Greens

Swiss Chard

Kale

Romaine

Cilantro

Mint

Fennel

Cucumbers

Carrots

Avocados

Oranges

Lemons

Limes

Pineapples

Mangos

Kiwis

Raspberries

Blueberries

Granny Smith Apples

Bananas

 

 

 

 

 

In-credibility

In-credibility

I work with people of all sorts who are at various stages in their fitness journey.  While we’re all coming from a different place and experiencing unique phases of health and fitness, there does seem to be a common thread among many.  We all seem to think it’s so much “easier” for everybody else.  In fact, I’m accused of this whole “easy road” business by many of my beloved clients on a very regular basis.  I’m also guilty of this prejudice at times (especially when working with male athletes who can eat peanut butter and bagels all day long and still lose 5 pounds…grrrr), but even athletes have their frustrations and believe me, they work to reach their goals…I mean REALLY. WERK.  HARD!

Anyhow, back to me 🙂 (which actually means you).   When it comes to fitness, there are some factors that tilt the tables in my favor.  I do enjoy exercise.  I also love vegetables.  I crave lots of water and genetically, my body responds well to most types of exercise.  I have practiced healthy habits most of my life and was raised by health conscious parents.  I work in a gym.  I have access and time to workout regularly.  Sounds like maintaining a reasonable level of fitness is a breeze for me, right?  Well, it’s certainly gotten easier over that last several years, but what led me here might surprise you.

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(source: and thanks to Amy for the reminder!)

 

 

What You Already Know

Several years ago I shared a blog post on my other website (omnoshedidnt.blogspot.com) about why I became a personal trainer.  While this post is accurate and true, it just scratches the surface as to what really stimulated my fitness revolution.

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(Get caught up on that original post by clicking here)

I rarely share the entire story about why my life changed so dramatically for 2 reasons: 1) It’s a long story (and I’m not the best at summarizing) 2) It’s not extremely interesting (but is perhaps relatable).  For the purpose of this post, I will do my best to summarize, and while “interesting” may be a lost cause, I’ll at least tie it up with a lesson…mmm’kay?

A Chapter in My Story

It began when I was pregnant with my second child.  The majority of my pregnancy was a breeze.  Aside from some typical tiredness in the first trimester, I felt like a champ and ate like a truck driver most of the pregnancy.  Around Christmas, I was approaching my 8th month and suddenly, while hunkered down in power gift wrapping mode, I became sick to my stomach.  At first I thought it was just the position I was in.  I was constricting my organs from the outside as little Liam was monopolizing the space inside.  I tried to walk it off and stretch out, but no dice.  I quickly became violently ill.  I will spare you the details.  Just note…it was icky.  I know what you’re thinking.  A pregnant lady throwing up is hardly blog-worthy.  But this little episode that I initially wrote off as a virus ending up lasting for nearly three. entire. yearrrrssss.  Have you ever thrown up for 3 years before?  I’d rather touch a snake than go through that again (probably).  My son was born, happy and healthy (praise God!) and of course, that was thankfully not a concern as my pregnancy and delivery progressed perfectly (minus my late night snuggle sessions with the porcelain throne).

 

post liam birth with iz

(postpartum and full of love for these two little bundles)

Once my son was born, I had assumed my hormones would regulate and the vomitting would subside.  It did not.  It wasn’t happening every night, but it was happening several times per month and often even weekly.  I began to recognize other symptoms and specific feelings that would hit me on the nights that I would awaken to the mass exodus that would occur from within my body.  The episodes were becoming more severe and my desire to eat at all was diminishing (a completely foreign experience for this foodie).  The result: a lethargic and frail version of myself.  I managed to continue to look fairly healthy for a while, but my weight continued to drop.  Eventually, my skin became dry (which was completely new to my ever oily complexion) and my baby fine hair thinned.  A typical, healthy weight for me has always been between 120-125. I recall going in to the hospital for a routine and preplanned (unrelated) surgery for my infamous crossed-eyes and stepping on the scale.  I was fully clothed, including a jacket and Uggs and the scale topped out at 98 lbs.  I probably hadn’t weighed that since I was 11 years old.

At this point, my immune system was complete crap.  Communicable diseases camped out like Cousin Eddie, outstaying their welcome with no relief in sight.

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(source)

I had gone to the doctor a few times to get checked out.  I had blood work done and all results were normal.  Neither of my doctors were concerned with my weight loss.  My physician suggested I speak to a counselor. (I agree that we can all benefit from some counseling) but, without saying the actual words, she basically let me know that this illness was all in my head.  She may have been completely correct.  I’m not one to argue and I try not to complain, so I just took her word for it and decided to focus on the things I could control.  Here is how that chapter ended:

I was laying in bed with the flu, a double ear infection (ruptured ear drum included) and (surprise, surprise) a stomachache.  We had just bought a house and I was supposed to be packing, but I was instead lying there feeling week and defeated.  I couldn’t hear, I couldn’t breathe and I could barely keep my eyes open.  Between my mom and my best friend, they took care of most of my packing.  As I stared at them blankly feeling so guilty for allowing then to do so much for me, I truly thought I was about to expire.  This felt like the end.  I wanted to go to sleep and never wake up.  I may have been praying or hallucinating or perhaps the antibiotics decided to kick in, but for whatever reason, I was able to formulate a significant conviction to survive.  At or around that moment, I decided that I would do anything/everything within my power to never get sick again!  I had already (over the last 3 years) began reading every book about fitness and nutrition that I could get my hands on.  This included textbooks, journals, fad diet books,  holistic nutrition books, books written by doctors, nutritionists, witch doctors, television personalities, herbalists, scientists and anyone/anything else I could get my hand on.

The path that worked for me

I decided to do an elimination diet.  Without too much detail, I basically eliminated almost everything from my diet (which wasn’t difficult, because there wasn’t much left).  I picked a few very simple ingredients and ate only that for several weeks.  One at a time, I reintroduced single ingredients (like I was an infant) to determine sensitivities.  If something didn’t work for me, I knew right away.  This forced me to keep food simple, eliminate processed foods and eat foods in their purest form.  This also allowed me to increase the quantity of calories I was intaking with a lower risk of purging them in the middle of the night.  I began to have more energy.  In fact, I felt the best I had ever felt in my whole entire life!  With my newfound energy, I started exercising again.  I began weight training again.  I increased the intensity of my yoga practice (which I never abandoned entirely), I started running/walking for about 30 minutes per day a few times a week.  Please believe me, THIS WAS NOT EASY.  I did not WANT to workout at first.  I did not WANT to eat everything that I put in my mouth.  I had to CHOOSE to make the BEST choices for me, because I wanted to be WELL more than I wanted to be SICK.  I wanted to have ENERGY more than I wanted to be immediately COMFORTABLE.  I wanted things to be DIFFERENT, so I had to act DIFFERENTLY.  After several months, I began to feel better.  In fact, MUCH better.   I felt insanely healthy.  Manically healthy.  I felt strong, empowered and like “me” again.  I wanted everyone in the world to know this glorious feeling.  So I got became a trainer.

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(When I began to regain energy, I started with good ole Zumba classes.  As I started feeling better, I began Weight training to feel stronger and add some muscle to my frame.  I have no idea what this piñata situation is, but it's pertinent to fitness, I'm sure)

My journey to wellness is more detailed than what I described in the paragraph above, but you get the gist of it.  I really just wanted to emphasize to you that we all have obstacles. I often prefer not to discuss mine, because while it was unpleasant at times, I was still able to live my life.  I had moments of despair, but I survived and became stronger.  My situation could have been far worse and I’m so grateful that I was able to change that circumstance.  This was not a permanent fix though.  The thing about fitness is that you’re never “done”.   It’s a daily practice.  I am now able to eat most foods without horrific consequences, so I have to make a conscious effort to make healthy choices because they are good for me.  I am grateful to be able to make this choice.  Yes, I love exercising.  Yes, I love eating “clean”.  But I also love cake.  I love watching movies.  I love eating cake while watching movies.  So, I have to find balance.  You have to make choices.  Sometimes you have to choose broccoli over cupcakes. Sometimes you have to choose to turn your life inside out to make it better.

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(My fitness journey isn't even close to being over, but what I am most joyful about now is that I get to be a part of the journey with so many of you.  I am so grateful that you trust me as your partner)

When I decided to “live” instead of disintegrate into my mattress and die, I had to make extreme changes.  Some people did not understand what I was doing.  Many thought I was ridiculous for being so aggressive.  But I had to heal.  I had to listen to what my body was telling me, not what other people thought .  It took me almost 3 years to get desperate enough to be willing to do absolutely anything.  It took another 18 months of practice, research and implementation before I started to feel consistently well.  It was so worth it though.  I cannot articulate how good it feels to be on the opposite side of constant lethargy.  Now, i rarely even catch a cold and I have energy than is uncontainable.  Everyone deserves to feel their best.  You do not have to accept your struggle as your destiny.  I don’t know how long your path is, but you won’t see what’s on the other side of your mountain if you don’t start climbing over it.  You don’t have to walk alone.  Take people on your journey with you.  Forget about the nay-sayers.  You can just smile and wink at them when they have something nasty to say.  Surround yourself with cheerleaders.  And for heavens sake, become your own biggest fan.  Believe in yourself.  If you can start something, you can continue something.  If you can continue, you can succeed.  You’re worth it!

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P.S.  The title of this post “In-credibility” means 2 things to me.  1) Many who assume I’ve always been “fit” have been concerned that I may lack credibility for never having to experience  a physical transformation myself.  I assure you, I’ve had to transform inside and out more than once.  2) Life is an incredible gift.  Take advantage of it by living as well as you possibly can.  Don’t waste a day, an hour or even a minute.  Enjoy it, appreciate it and embrace it.

The Antidote to Self Pity

Do you ever feel sorry for yourself?self_pity

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Let me preface this post with the following disclaimer:

I do not like talking about “feelings”.  I spend 97% of my life denying them.  Unfortunately, roughly once per month a feeling will surface and I have one of 3 options.  I can acknowledge and embrace the feeling, I can stifle it with a cookie, or I can bury it deep in my soul and it will inevitably erupt in the form of chin acne.  Not all feelings are deep.  Some can seem quite shallow, but in the end, when sorted out, all feelings can be a catalyst for self improvement.

A while back I was having a conversation with one of my friends.  We were discussing the pros and cons of being single.  Ultimately, while there are plenty of perks about being independent/unattached, this discussion led to what we miss most about being in a relationship.  There are, of course, the meaningful things [insert awkward feeling jargon here].  Having someone to talk about nothing to.  Sitting in a comfortable silence while still being in the presence of someone with whom you care mutually for each other.  Getting dressed up for dates is fun, but even staying home and cooking feels like a date when you’re “with someone”.  As we went back and forth with reasonable considerations, the conversation quickly began to fall apart and start to make sense all at once:

Me: “I’ll never own a bottle of perfume again.”

Friend: “Why not?”

Me: “It’s frivolous.  I don’t need it.  I’d rather “pretend” I’m buying perfume but actually put that money in a jar “in case of emergency”.

Friend: “Do you even like perfume?”

**Side note: I’ve had the same bottle of perfume since 2005 and it’s still half full**

Me: “Not really.  That’s why I’d never waste money on it (and now I’m slowly realizing that I sound insane but I’m not ready to stop defending my argument).

Friend: “So you want someone to get you a gift that you don’t like?”

Me: “No.  Yes.  No.  The perfume is a metaphor!  I am a single adult with 2 kids.  My role in life requires that I be the epitome of responsibility.  Every decision that I make effects at least 2 other people who need me, so what I’m saying is: frivolousness is over forever!”

Of course, my friend knew exactly what I was talking about and could totally relate, but as one of us tries to remain sane at any given time, she was able to be the voice of reason and explain to me that we will always find ways to be frivolous…even on a “budget” (eeew).

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(Metaphor)

This conversation occurred well over a year ago, but it stuck with me.  I’ve not had a single meltdown of this kind since, because I’ve been brought to reason by a few revelations:

1) I’m surrounded by amazing people that fill my heart.  Just when I think there isn’t any room left, someone else pulls up a chair and takes a front row seat.

2) I live a life full of meaning, but appreciate that a healthy amount of frivolousness is acceptable and encouraged…I don’t know what the exact ratio of meaningful:frivolous should be, but I’m guessing the 80/20 rule applies in some respect.

3) Splurging on yourself or getting a gift is fun, I don’t deny that, but if you want to experience a “feeling” that can’t be replicated by any other action, try giving.

(***Added after the fact: I do understand that there are real problems in the world and that this may seem extremely petty…that’s kind of the point.***)

I know that giving is not a new concept and I’m sure that you’ve all given plenty of yourself to others, but I was recently inspired by a friend/client who finds so much joy in giving to others, that you can’t help but want to do the same.  Without sparing an ounce of creativity, he seems to be concocting ways to make others happy at least 80% of the time.  His behavior is what led me to my next idea…

I Needed a Gift Idea

I wanted to do something for others.  I am so blessed to be able to live a life that I am passionate about.  Not everyone gets to make a career out of something they’d happily do for free.  Above all of that, I get to go to work each day and be surrounded by the most inspirational people.  People with huge hearts, big ambitions and pure intentions to make the world a better place.  I wanted to be able to show all of these people that they matter to me.  Their well being (physically and mentally) is important to me.  For this reason, I am offering free yoga for the entire month of August.  Even if you are a current student of mine, you still get to attend for free in August.  New students are welcome.  Friends and family are welcome.  No strings attached.  Come try it once, or come every time.  I will not accept payment for yoga in the month of August.  This is just a small token of my gratitude, and I know it might not appeal to everyone, but this is what I have to give right now.

If you aren’t in my local area, you can access this private link for the month of August and take one of my online yoga classes at your own pace.

This is my metaphorical bottle of perfume for you.  You might like it, you might not 😉 But, you are welcome to re-gift it to a friend…no offense taken!

Important Reminder:

While giving is rewarding beyond measure, you can’t give what you don’t have.  Make sure you are filling yourself up as well.  Self care through proper nutrition, exercise, and recovery (rest) are absolutely imperative if you want to be there for others.  If you need help finding a balanced nutrition and fitness plan, consider gifting yourself a healthier lifestyle!  Check out the “About the Plan” tab at the top of the page for more information about the StrongCalmSexy.com plan.