New Year, New Goals, Fresh Start

We are just two days away from a new year. 2012 has really been a year of challenges and learning experiences. Each experience has helped me look at my life through a different lens. The overall theme and lesson of 2012: Let GO and Let God. Oh and PATIENCE! Patience is a pain in my tush. I kid you know patience is such a hard thing and letting go is just as difficult. But I am slowly learning that being optimistic and positive about life really allows the good to flow right in.

I have high hopes for 2013. I am positive that this is MY year. Why? Because I am calling upon that amazing law of attraction and attracting nothing but good things into my life. I want to start the year with positive intentions and strong affirmations as well as goals that can really bring me closer to the person I envision myself growing into. Here is my list of goals. These are not in order of importance, rather the order in which they come to me at the moment.

1. Complete the 30 Day Green Smoothie Challenge. I just signed up for this challenge to encourage myself to start off on the right track. Though I eat clean, organic, healthy vegan food 99.9% of the time, I really think this will instill some sort of discipline and keep my energy and spirits lifted during the first month of the year. The challenge requires you replace one or two meals with a green smoothie. I will start off with one meal and see where that goes. My mom says I can’t lose anymore weight without the risk of looking too skinny. I’m doing this for cleansing and detoxification purposes. I will keep you updated on my progress and post recipes!

2. Maintain my physical body and continue to strengthen and tone. I have a pretty solid fitness routine but these last two weeks have made me feel like a blob. Me and cold weather are not friends but I am making it a goal to push myself to be as active as possible. I have my Zumba Exhilarate DVDs and I will be joining Planet Fitness for the sake of motivation (and to drag my brother with me to bond over weight lifting). Oh yes, I will be doing a plank a day challenge. I really need to step my game up.

3. Take time to really stop, breathe, think and then speak. I know it is good to speak your mind but how many times do you think back to what you said and thought: maybe that did not need to be said. I want to be more mindful of my thoughts, actions and the words coming out of my mouth. I want to exude positivity. Sri Sathya Sai Baba said, “Before you speak, think -Is it necessary? Is it true? Is it kind? Will it hurt anyone? Will it improve on the silence?”

4. Continue to find at LEAST one thing to be grateful for everyday.

5. Make more time for loved ones. I try my best but sometimes I get caught up in myself and forget I need them as much as they need me.

6. Cook one new dish a week. I don’t want to get rusty! I need to try new things and share these lovely concoctions with the world.

7. Get my Zumba certification

8. Find an apartment. I am PRAYING I find the right and perfect place to establish myself.

9. Meditate and do yoga more.

10. Find the light, the good and God in everyone and everything no matter how difficult.

11. Dedicate more time and energy to my nutrition education and hopefully let go of my anxiety regarding coaching my clients. I can do this!

These things may change and I will be adding more (def happens along the way) but I hope that I can stick to these goals for 2013.

Peace, love, no beef and a HAPPY NEW YEAR!


P.S. What are your goals and intentions for the new year?


Listening to Understand Your Body

I’m dedicating this post to the discussion of how to really obtain a firm connection and understanding of your body and becoming one with yourself by listening to what you need.

I admit I had assumed people would just get this since it feels so natural to me. I feel that I’ve maintained such a reverence for my body that listening to it is incredibly crucial. I know when I’m tired, when I’m hungry, when it’s time to rest and when I simply don’t feel well. This takes time, conscious effort and awareness. When there is a lack of awareness, there is disconnect, imbalance and often illness.  I do understand that many people struggle with body image, self-control, self-esteem and other nutrition and health related issues and this may seem as though it is a great challenge. Luckily it’s easier than you think. And what’s even better about it is thinking about it (in regards to listening to yourself) is discouraged and unnecessary. 

However, for the moment maybe you might want to reflect just a bit on your current lifestyle. What do you want to change to better your health? How is your environment, career, relationships with others influencing your health? In case you didn’t know already, all of these things influence our health (but that doesn’t mean to go blame someone for your health, just recognize the impact these different aspects of your life have on you). Our minds, bodies and souls are all connected, they are one entity. When one is slightly off, the other aspects are influenced.

How often do you find yourself eating but then realize after you had scarfed down a whole bag of salty potato chips that in actuality you were not truly hungry?  How often do you find yourself merely eating out of habit or out of pure pleasure rather than for your health?

Before you grab something to eat today take a moment and really ask yourself how you feel.  By taking just a minute (you can spare one of those, right?) and observing how you feel opens up your awareness of yourself. The moment you stop to pay attention to yourself, awareness increases.

When you are truly hungry, you are not eating to cover up or fill an emotional void. A perfect example is the stereotypical pint of Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough after a stressful day. Sure, it tastes great but what are you really feeding? Most likely youre not feeding your body, youre feeding your emotions. When you are truly hungry, your body will tell you. Your stomach may start to growl; you may not be able to focus properly. Dont underestimate how intelligent your body is. You are blessed with an incredible system. If you just pause for a moment and allow yourself to really pay attention to your needs, you can hear your body subtly hinting to you. Self-awareness is silent, reflective and intuitive and in the beginning takes time. Recognize that you are truly worth it. You are the only you.  

Peace, love and NO beef here.


Overcooked Spaghetti

On Monday my family and I went on a little adventure to Minnewaska State Park near New Paltz, New York. The last time I went hiking up there was the fall of my senior year of high school (back in 2006). The foliage was breathtaking and it was a phenomenal hike. Monday was the perfect day to hike. I was glad I had the day off and was able to absorb some quality time with mother nature. Little did I know mother nature wanted to kick my butt (literally- since my glutes were on fire!). 

The hike up (we were hiking to a lake-3+ miles up) was phenomenal. We took our time and really got in touch with nature. It was meditative and peaceful. One of the things I have learned so far from Integrative Nutrition is, it’s important to take time for yourself, for meditation, silence and relaxation. This was ethereal. 

Once we got to lake Awosting we were pretty fatigued but we dove right into the most majestic and relaxing body of water EVER. 

After a mini siesta and a healthy lunch (I had an avocado, sun-dried tomato, spinach, red onion half sandwich and munched on some almonds) we made our way down. We did not realize how exhausted we were until we hit the 45 minute mark. It took nearly 2 hours to get to the lake and we were determined to get out of there and back to the car in less than that. I grumbled on my way down and gave my mother the “are we there yet” look. 

I consider myself to be in pretty good shape and go to the gym and exercise regularly but the hike back down made my legs feel like overcooked spaghetti. I don’t know about you but I love the burn after a great workout but this just felt dreadful. I was hot, damp from my swim and sweat and thirsty. My once cold water was now lukewarm and unbearable.  But just knowing I was so close motivated me to keep going. That’s truly important for any workout (don’t hurt yourself though)- don’t give up on yourself, keep pushing and know your desired result is right around the corner.  

After an hour and 20 minutes we finally made it back to the car. My legs melted into my seat and I relaxed completely. Even though it was tiring, this was truly worth every mile. 

Luckily, I had enough energy to stop off at a farmers market to pick up some organic peaches and blueberries and cook a light and delicious dinner when I got home. 

You bet I slept well that night!

Now to find something to eat for dinner…

Peace, love, hiking and no beef,