Today, I want to talk about something that I know most people struggle with, especially women, almost on a daily basis:
Comparison, Body/Beauty Negativity.
I came across this quote a friend of mine from the gym shared the other day and it really stuck out to me. This past week I have fallen back into the comparison game a little.
Think about this quote a minute. Most of us think flowers are pretty…but we also think Christmas lights are pretty. We also think fall leaves, sunsets, the ocean, or maybe even the mountains are pretty.
But guess what? They all look different…yet we still think they are all pretty.
More often than not, we fall into the trap of comparison: “If only I looked like her”, “I wish I had a body like hers”, or “I wish I was as pretty as her…I’m not pretty.”
Any of these sound familiar?
I don’t know when comparing ourselves to others started, but I’m sure it’s gone on for centuries. Most of us compare ourselves to others without even realizing it.
You know what I think about this?
God made us in His image and we are a wonderfully made creation…which means we are all pretty, beautiful, and a masterpiece.
If all of us looked or acted the same, what fun would that be? I feel it would get boring.
There seems to always be something we want to change about ourselves. I’m guilty of this. Most days I wish my face was slimmer, I had a more toned core, or took better pictures. But I have less of those days now than I ever have. If I catch myself thinking these things, I have to remind myself how ridiculous I’m being!
Comparison is the thief of joy…literally. I mean, have you ever been happy when you compare yourself, or wish you looked like someone else? Probably not.
If you aren’t careful, it can take you down a dark path.
I will leave you with this today, and make this a reminder whenever you catch yourself comparing and wishing you were different or looked a certain way:
Holla if you love chocolate + peanut butter!
Anything that’s a combo of chocolate and peanut butter is my favorite sweet treat. The two are literally made for each other, no doubt about it.
My absolute favorite candy is Reese’s (go figure) LOL
Since I love baking and I love my chocolate and peanut butter, I decided to whip up a batch of home-made Reese’s cups, with a little healthier twist.
The great thing about this recipe, is the fact you need minimal ingredients!
These are dairy free, grain free, and gluten free.
Let’s get to the recipe!
-1/3 cup natural peanut/almond butter (you want the kind with ONLY peanuts (or almonds) and maybe salt too, as the ingredient. But any nut butter can be used.
-3 T Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
-2 T coconut oil
–1 teaspoon vanilla
–2 T honey, or maple syrup, or agave
peanut butter layer:
–1/3 cup nut butter
–2 T coconut oil
–1 teaspoon vanilla
–optional: 1/2 to 1 scoop protein powder
–mini muffin tin
–mini muffin tin liners
1. Melt your coconut oil and mix in with your cocoa powder, peanut butter, and other ingredients for the chocolate layer.
2.Once mixed well, spoon out a chocolate layer in each lined mini muffin space, leaving room at the top for the peanut Butter layer.
3.Place in freezer about 5 minutes to set. While in freezer, mix your ingredients for the peanut butter layer.
4.Take chocolate layer Reese cups out of freezer and spoon peanut butter mixture on top of chocolate layer. Place back in freezer at least an hour.
5.store in freezer, and pop one out when ready to eat! 🙂
Happy Sunday guys!
Hope you all were able to enjoy the beautiful sunsine this weekend. Spring is getting closer and closer! 😀
Today after church and lunch, I decided to do a little meal prepping for the week. I don’t like to prep all meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner), but I like to keep some things consistent and ready to eat throughout the week.
This week I decided to have my lunches roughly the same + to have them prepared.
I had some leftover baked chicken, so I decided to brown some ground turkey to change things up day to day.
(And yes, I know there’s pink in the meat…I finished cooking it) 😀
I was going to patty out turkey burgers, but decided against it.
I also roasted brussel sprouts and made sweet potato fries (which are my fave)
For the brussel sprouts I cut them in half, drizzled with olive oil, + sprinkled them with salt and pepper.
For the sweet potato fries, I decided to sprinkle cinnamon on top.
I baked both of these on the same pan at 350 for 20-30 minutes.
I was going to cook some rice, but I’ve been having some of that recently, so I opted to cook quinoa again. Quinoa is one of the acquired taste foods in my opinion, but seasoned with garlic salt + pepper (and mixed in with other food) it’s not too bad!
To end things, I made another batch of my peanut butter oat balls, but this time I made them with way less chocolate chips, and used almond butter instead of regular peanut butter. I also added 1 scoop of a cappuccino flavored protein powder for extra protein and flavor. I was a fan of how they turned out!
I didn’t make out any breakfast items. I’ve been on a scrambled egg kick lately, but after a couple weeks of that I crave other foods. This week it’ll probably be protein shakes, smoothies, or oatmeal.
My breakfasts, lunches, and snacks will be fairly similar, but I like to be open for whatever and to have dinner free for different things. Sometimes I’m out for dinner or someone else cooks, so I like to have that variety. Balance, ya’ll! 🙂
-Go to gym 4-5 days
-Run 2-3 days
-Vlog at least once
-Write down 1 thing I love about myself every day this week
-Laugh, smile, + love a lot <3
Honestly, most of these goals are going to be part of my weekly goals for a while…and the last goal for as long as I live <3
Happy Friday/Weekend friends!
I hope all of you had a great week. We had some rainy days, but it looks like the sun will be here for the weekend! 🙂
I thought I’d end out this week by sharing with you a lower body stretch routine you can do anywhere, even from the comfort of your own home.
Stretching is one of those things many of us overlook or slack on…I know I do often. Many times, when a workout is done, we just leave and go about our day, and for others, they may just not have a lot of extra time for it. Stretching, though, is SO important and necessary for our bodies.
Stretching helps keep our muscles flexible, strong, and healthy. To maintain a good range of motion in our joints, we need good flexibility, otherwise, our muscles will shorten and become tighter.
When our muscle are tight and lack range of motion, when the time comes for an activity or exercise, we can’t move as well (extend or flex as much).
Even just stretching a few minutes every day can benefit us and our bodies. Whether you do it before or after a workout, when you wake up, or before you go to bed.
Here is a good lower body routine you can do anytime and any day.
**Do/hold each stretch 15-30 seconds, going through this 1-2 times.**
This is a very common yoga post, but such a great stretch. This targets your hamstrings, calves, the arches of your feet, and even your shoulders. Be sure on this stretch, you keep your shoulders away from your ears, and really drive your hips and butt in the air.
2.Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch
All too often, I hear people talk about having tight hips. Most Americans have a desk job, and when you sit for prolonged hours of the day (not using those muscles), they become tighter and tighter. This is why you feel stiff or slight pain in the hip flexor area. This stretch targets those hip flexors.
For this stretch, from the kneeling lunge position, shift your weight forward until you feel a stretch in your hip. Make sure to get both sides!
Another yoga move, this pigeon pose stretch is great for thighs, groin area, psoas major muscle, hips, nd even your abdomen.
For this pose, you can start in the pushup position, swing one leg underneath you, and realease your arms out in front of you as far as you can until you feel a stretch. Many people can’t make it all the way to the ground, so no worries if you can’t get that far. As long as you feel a stretch.
If You have never done this move before, or you want a deeper stretch in your abdomen, then stay up on your hands and sit up taller.
4.Thread the Needle
Another great stretch for your hips, and to help open them up, is through this move.
Begin by lying on your back, with legs up and bent to 90* and parallel. Next, cross your left ankle over your right thigh, making sure your ankle is a little past your thigh. Then you take your hand through and around your right leg, and pull toward your chest until you feel a stretch.
5.Standing Quad Stretch
The last one is a standing quad stretch. Be sure to stand up tall, and use a wall or chair if you need for balance. Pull up one ankle high as you can toward your butt. The taller you stand, you are also reaching those hip flexors again.
Happy Wednesday Friends!
This week is starting to fly by, but it’s been a good one I hope!
I want to talk some with you guys today about feeling discouraged when it comes to your workouts or activities.
We’ve all experienced that dicsouragement and weakness with our sport, workout, or other activities in life at some point. It’s a terrible feeling because you feel like you are not able (and may not ever) be able to get it done, get better, be stronger, faster, etc.
I want you to remember something as you start to experience this:
YOU ARE STRONGER THAN YOU THINK!
Just recently I started CrossFit at a local gym. After years of running through college, and really just bouncing back and forth between my own workouts, I really needed a change, something that would challenge me, and a place I could be surrounded by wonderful people. This is it for me. I love it!
After my college years of nothing but cardio (running + spinning) and me being all over the place with what I wanted to do the last couple of years, this Is exactly what I needed.
Every workout is different, challenging, and it pushes me to see my strengths (and what areas i need work on!). I love the push and the challenge. Not to mention, I love having a workout already put together for me! After putting clients workouts together, I enjoy not having to do that for me! 😀
Going into CrossFit, I had no idea what my strength was. I knew I wasn’t as strong as I would like to be, but when it came to any strength move, I had no idea what I could do. Our bodies will be like that. I was even telling myself I’d be keeping light weights for a long time.
On some things, yes, I need to keep the lighter weight right now, but on other moves, I am actually surprising myself on how much I can lift or do.
(Overhead squat w/ 45 pounds. Working on these for sure!)
This move I was doing is a deadlift. I had no idea what I could lift, and so far I’ve gotten up to 150 pounds. I still am surprised I can do it!
We can be SO tough and down on ourselves. That negativity creeps in and you begin to believe when you tell yourself “I’ll never be able to do it”, “I can’t do it”, “I’m not that strong”, etc. We believe these lies. We are capable of WAY more than you think.
For some, it could be them believing they’ll never make it up some stairs again. With work, dedication, and encouragement, I just bet you can get back up those stairs again. God made us into some powerful machines! 😀
I have a looong way to go and to improve in a lot of areas, and I won’t lie, just last night I was super discouraged that I am having to scale (make easier) so many things. I have to remember that I am already surprising myself with things, and I have to take it day at a time.
Be proud of your journey thus far and how far you’ve come since the beginning! Let’s stop being so hard on ourselves. I need to work on it more! But I know how far I’ve come!
We are not even one week into 2018 and I am already so sick + tired of seeing all of these diet + weight loss ads being advertised.
Yes, a lot of people have goals at the first of the year to lose weight, tone up, or just be healthier; but with all of these companies promising you quick weight loss if you eat this, count this, or buy their product, it’s no wonder people get confused and/or fall off the bandwagon shortly into the year.
(Strawberry smoothie from Neighborhood Brew, off Valleydale)
I’ve fallen into diet traps before in my lifetime, researching different approaches, eliminating certain foods, and of course, calorie counting. All of these got me in bad places and was NOT good for my health, both physically and mentally.
Our bodies are incredible machines. I mean, God made us, how could they not be?
Food is fuel to our bodies. We need it not only for energy, but for our bodies even to be able to function. We must feed our organs too! Food is also meant to be enjoyed.
(Buffalo Wild Wings: Wings + bacon cheese fries)
It is important we have a balance of exercise, feeding our bodies nutritious food, but also feeding our bodies food for pleasure. It can confuse our minds if we fall into all of these diet traps. I am practicing every day to follow more of this healthy balanced, intuitive eating lifestyle, and each day with each step forward, I am finding it more freeing.
(night time cereal combo of Vanilla Chex + Fruit Loops)
So, why do diets NOT work?
I’m here to give you 3 reasons why.
1.Diets essentially slow down the process of losing weight.
But, wait! Aren’t diets supposed to help us lose weight faster? NO. When we put our bodies through any kind of “diet”, it is actually a stressor to (and on) our bodies. Our bodies tend to fight against us when we are going through something like this. That should be our first clue! Extreme dieting, eliminating food groups, and being so restrictive is not what our bodies were made to do or be put through. Dieting just causes our stress hormones (adrenaline + cortisol) to increase.
So, all this time you were thinking going on a diet would relieve some stress? Think again.
(Salad I put together with leftover chicken tenders + orange pieces)
2.They usually don’t work long term/Aren’t always sustainable.
If someone goes on a diet to lose “X” amount of pounds, and they had to eliminate a food group, be restrictive, sacrifice going out with friends + family, and maybe even had a to take a certain company’s product, what happens when this person reaches their goals?
Are they going to continue to miss out on enjoying dinner out with family + friends? Are they willing to continue to pay for the product or eliminate a certain food group the rest of their life?
Realistically, it doesn’t always work.
In many cases, people end up gaining weight back after reaching their goal and getting off the diet, but their happiness may be through the roof if they are able to enjoy things they missed out on before.
Of course, I say everything in moderation, but we must also consider our happiness. Want to enjoy a date night with your significant other and enjoy a good meal + dessert? Go for it!
A lot of this falls under intuitive eating, which I will talk more abut in future posts. All in all, think about going through a particular “diet” for the rest of your life. I’m sorry, but I don’t want that for my life!
(Panera Bread: Side salad, Butternut squash soup, and baguette)
3.Diets usually are NO FUN!
Let’s be real…when has a “diet” ever been rainbows + unicorns? NEVER. There may be some excitement in the beginning, because, hey…I have goals and I want to reach them…but soon that dies off when you are craving a piece of bread, a glass of milk, or even a piece of chocolate. Nine times out of ten, when you eliminate something and tell yourself you aren’t allowed to have it, the cravings for that will only get stronger and stronger. So much strong, that you just might give in, ruin your “diet”, you get down + frustrated with yourself, and you feel you have to start over.
Who wants to live like that?
I used to think I ruined things if I gave in to eating something that I truly wanted. I no longer want to be like that. It DID stress me out, I got frustrated with myself, and it’s not worth it. If you want a food, it should be enjoyed!!
Having a balanced lifestyle of both healthy + nutritious foods, and those foods that give us pleasure, is what it’s about. I am 4 year out from 30 (oh lawd) and I am at the point where I want to give my body the nutritious food it needs to function, but also enjoy foods I love, try new things, and NOT be stressed about it.
(Ice cream of all kinds is good. I have always enjoyed Arctic Zero for a healthier option)
So before you sign up for this “diet” or buy this product, think twice about long term and your happiness and health.
If you need someone to guide you through it, or need someone to help reach your goals without going on a diet, please contact me! I am starting this year as a health coach and I want to help you get where you want to be without falling for these gimmicks and false hopes.
Whether it is for personal training or health coaching, you can always email me at email@example.com.