Sleep

The best career decision I ever made was making it a non-negotiable to start my day no earlier than noon on Mondays. Being able to sleep in until 9:00 and starting my week off without the crazy hustle of making that 8am meeting or 5:30am client has been a game changer. I don’t dread Mondays, I get to fully enjoy my entire weekend, and I look forward to the week so much more.

I need sleep. Once I finally started getting more sleep and only allowing myself 2x/week of early clients, my quality of life improved ten-fold. The video above nails it on exactly how I function.

My morning ritual is waking up to a peaceful alarm with no snooze, making a cup of coffee, and finding a podcast to listen to while I make breakfast, pack my food for the day, and get ready. No negative energy from the BS on TV. No checking my email. When I brush my teeth, I read affirmations I have written about career, relationships, fitness, and finances and let those words sink in every morning. Whether it’s a 4:15 morning or an 8/9am morning, the same ritual stands.

We all hear how the early morning risers are supposedly the most productive, but I know for a fact that getting good sleep and sleeping until 8 or 9am more days than not has made me a lot more productive. Everyone is wired differently. I know there are individuals out there who kick ass with an early morning start. I coach a few of them, and my dad is that exact person too. Personally, I felt bad for a hot minute when I would turn down clients who wanted to start early on days I told myself were my mornings, but then I saw how I became a better coach, friend, sister, and daughter when I allowed myself to sleep, and also have a life during the week.

Research continues to come out to show how sleep is one of the most important things an individual can do to stay healthy, lose weight, and stay sharp. For the longest time I would tell myself, “You can sleep when you die.” Fast forward to my body pretty much shutting down in 2012, and I learned real fast that mindset does not create a lifestyle of longevity and thriving. I want to be my best self and give my best self to my family, friends, and clients. Knowing now how I tick and what works best for my lifestyle and body is something I will not take lightly ever again.

How are you wired? Are you an early riser and thrive in the morning? Do you stay up later and sleep in to create the best day? What is your morning ritual?

Problems are not problems

“Problems are not problems. They are subconscious patterns that need to be adjusted. Adjust patterns in your subconscious and you can adjust so many things in your life.” Dandapani

The quote above resonated with me very deeply when I heard it on my favorite podcast, Mind Pump, this week. Check out the episode HERE.

Currently, the problem I am battling is learning how to date in this online world. It is a doozie. A game of process of elimination and learning how to pinpoint men who are ready for something more or who simply want fun. After listening to this podcast episode, I had a paradigm shift, game changer, AhHa moment! It helped me to understand this problem is not a problem, but a subconscious pattern that needs to shift.

My shift is looking like this…

Quote
  • Choosing to not succumb to the negative bull shit that people tell me, or I read on social media, or hear on TV.

  • Choosing to take a stand for what I believe is true and that I know in my heart of hearts is real.

  • Choosing to believe there is more out there then this current state.

  • Choosing to demand more of myself and not using the scapegoat of a problem to limit my growth potential.

  • Choosing to see all the possibilities and greatness Austin has to offer.

  • Choosing to live boldly and confidently, and do life all in.

  • Choosing to let things/situations/people Be and not get wrapped up in letting them Go.

  • Choosing to treat my dating life like I do my health and fitness.

Adjusting my subconscious by only 1-degree has already started opening up new doors. It is easy to get wrapped up in the Negative Nancy mentality, but I challenge you to look at the problem(s) you are facing head on and adjust your subconscious pattern. I can promise you that it will be a game changer, and 2019 will turn out a lot different than planned.


Showout's Food Log

Over the past couple of months I have had a handful of clients ask what I eat on a daily basis. I will say I am an 80/20 clean eater; I am airing on the side of 80% vs 90% because I love going out with my friends and enjoying a cocktail or ten! The food is clean, but we all know alcohol has zero nutritional value.

I also want to point out how increasing my strength training volume to 4x per week over the past 2 years has been such a game changer. My metabolism is legit faster! I don’t have to kill myself with copious amounts of cardio. I can enjoy treats more often and it not derail my progress. I have more muscle, which in turn means a faster metabolism. I am finally seeing my glutes grow too! PRO TIP: If you want an ass or your glutes to grow, you have to eat! 1200-1500 cals a day and running your butt off is literally going to give you no butt.

Below is MyFitnessPal food log over the past few weeks, which gives more detail on portion sizes, and I also included a hand-written week of nutrition.

TUESDAY

Breakfast: Baked sweet potato with coconut oil and cinnamon. Green tea with collagen, Equilibrium Nutrition protein powder, cinnamon, and a drop of clove doTERRA essential oil

Lunch: Salad —> Alaskan Cod, green onion, beets, red potato, avocado, Trader Joe’s Turmeric, ginger, almond butter dressing, spring mix, olive oil

Post workout: 1/2 cup oatmeal w/ 1/2 cup frozen raspberries topped with cinnamon and drizzled with honey 

Dinner: Salad —> mahi mahi, artichokes,  olives, beets, avocado, green onion, kelp noodles, spring mix, olive oil, and this amazing dressing from Trader Joe’s that is turmeric, ginger, lemon juice, and almond butter. The side is basmati rice cooked in coconut milk and a sprinkle of goat cheese on top.

WEDNESDAY

Breakfast: Baked sweet potato with coconut oil and cinnamon. Green tea with collagen, Equilibrium Nutrition protein powder, cinnamon, and a drop of clove doTERRA essential oil

Lunch: Salad —> Alaskan Cod, green onion, beets, red potato, avocado, Trader Joe’s Turmeric, ginger, almond butter dressing, spring mix, olive oil

Post workout: 1/2 cup oatmeal w/ 1/2 cup frozen raspberries topped with cinnamon and drizzled with honey 

Mid-afternoon snack: Health Lab peanut butter protein ball, dollop of hummus w/ hard boiled egg

Dinner: Salad—> Alaskan cod, green onion, steamed carrots, red potato, avocado, kelp noodles, spring mix, coconut aminos, olive oil, sprinkle of Bragg’s nutritional yeast on top. Avocado hummus for dipping. A side of basmati rice cooked in coconut milk and a sprinkle of goat cheese on top.

THURSDAY

Breakfast: Baked sweet potato with coconut oil and cinnamon. Coffee with collagen, honey, cinnamon, and a drop of clove doTERRA essential oil. Equilibrium Nutrition protein powder shake. 

Post workout: 1/2 cup oatmeal w/ 1/2 cup frozen raspberries topped with cinnamon and drizzled with honey

Lunch: Salad —> Alaskan Cod, green onion, beets, red potato, avocado, Trader Joe’s Turmeric, ginger, almond butter dressing, spring mix, olive oil

Dinner: Salad—> Wild caught salmon, green onion, artichokes quarters, olives, red potato, avocado, spring mix, steamed carrots, Primal Kitchen Dreamy Italian dressing, coconut aminos. Side of cauliflower gnocchi.

FRIDAY

Breakfast: Baked sweet potato with coconut oil and cinnamon. Coffee with collagen, honey, cinnamon, and a drop of clove doTERRA essential oil. Equilibrium Nutrition protein powder shake. 

Post workout: 1/2 cup oatmeal w/ 1/2 cup frozen raspberries topped with cinnamon and drizzled with honey
Lunch: Salad —> Alaskan Cod, green onion, beets, red potato, avocado, Trader Joe’s Turmeric, ginger, almond butter dressing, spring mix, olive oil

Dinner at Polvos: Share large guacamole with friends. Chips and salsa. 1 1/2 Mexican martinis

SATURDAY

Breakfast: 1/2 cup oatmeal w/ 1/2 cup frozen blueberries topped with cinnamon and drizzled with honey. Coffee with collagen, honey, cinnamon, and a drop of clove doTERRA essential oil. Equilibrium Nutrition protein powder shake. 

Afternoon: Day drinking with my friends. I typically drink the following when I am out day drinking: Ruby Red or Deep Eddy Lemon and water, Dulce Vida Ruby with Waterloo or Tequila with Waterloo. The grapefruit and watermelon flavors taste amazing with tequila!

Dinner at Stella San Jac: Beet and goat cheese salad. Share the lamb meatballs and beet chips. Split a bottle of Rosé with a friend.

SUNDAY

Breakfast: Coffee with collagen, honey, cinnamon, and a drop of clove doTERRA essential oil. Equilibrium Nutrition protein powder shake. 

Brunch at Revelry: Share French fries with my friend. Mimosa carafes.

Afternoon: cocktails out and about with friends

Dinner: Salad—> Wild caught salmon, green onions, avocado, red potato, steamed carrots, Primal Kitchen Ranch dressing, kelp noodles, spring mix, coconut aminos

2019 Mantra

TRUST. LET GO. BE OPEN.

If you see a door, enter it. If you see a staircase, climb it. This year I am choosing to move toward my challenges. Showing up and doing the work. Not “please make it easier” but “please let me feel it.”

heart-made-of-hearts

TRUST

I am choosing to trust the process of life. From career, to relationships, to health, I am trusting what is to come. Living in a spirit of faith and believing in the process. Trusting that people are good at heart even when things do not go the way I planned. Trusting that this beautiful life will supply all my needs and fulfill my deepest desires. Trusting that as I learn more about nutrition, fitness, and health that I evolve into the best version of myself and can give inspire others.

LET GO.

I am choosing to let go of trying to always be in control. My Type A personality makes this extremely challenging, but I am present to my controlling nature and letting things go one day at a time. Letting go of past hurt. Letting go of damaged relationships. Letting go of a lacking mindset. Letting go of bitterness. Letting go complacency. Letting go of blame.

BE OPEN.

I am choosing to be abundant in every aspect of my life. Being open to dreaming big and taking big action on growing my business to new heights. Being open to meeting my partner in crime. Being open to saying Yes Yes. Being open to receiving love. Being open to fully owning being a business owner. Being open to meeting new people who I can work and grow with.

Trust. Let Go. Be Open fully encompasses what my heart desires in 2019. Do you have a yearly mantra? If so, share below.

SHOWOUT Shape Up

Dates: January 7th- February 4th

Details: 1st 2 weeks focus on a dialed-in eating plan. Remaining 2 weeks introducing other foods back in the diet. Pre and post body comp, weekly goals (nutrition, fitness, steps), meal plans, shopping list, weekly update on who's sticking to the goals. 2 winners at the end of the 30 days: most body fat loss AND most consistent on hitting weekly goals. The winners will receive one personal training session from me, shout out on my social media platform, and $25 gift certificate to Total Nutrition.

Price: $40

Email me at showoutmeg@gmail.com to register by December 21st. Capped at 20 people!

Butternut Squash & Pumpkin Soup

soup

Tis the season for wonderful winter vegetables! I bought some uncooked but prepped butternut squash at Trader Joe’s. The squash was already peeled and cut up, which saved me a ton of time. It has been super cold for Texans the past few days so I was craving some soup. I took my newly bought butternut squash and other ingredients I had in my house and came up with the following:

Ingredients:
1 package butternut squash (equivalent to 1 butternut squash)
1 15-oz can organic coconut milk
1 15-oz can organic pumpkin
green onion
salt & pepper to taste

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350-degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil. Spread the butternut on the foil and bake for 20-30 minutes. Squash should be soft when fully cooked. Dump the cooked squash in a food processor and puree. Add in the can of coconut milk. Puree. Add in the can of pumpkin. Puree. Add the green onion and seasonings. Puree.

Voila! A delicious soup with leftovers for the following day. ENJOY.

Coffee

I am lovvvvvving my new morning coffee!

Ingredients:

  • 2TB of Collagen

  • 1 TB Cacao Powder

  • 1TB of Tree Hive Maple Syrup + Honey (only use if having hot)

coffee recipe

BENEFITS OF COLLAGEN:

  • ease joint pain

  • reverse skin aging

  • build muscle and burn fat

  • reduce cellulite

  • improve digestive health

BENEFITS OF CACAO POWDER:

  • 40x the antioxidants of blueberries

  • full of magnesium for enhanced focus

  • full of theobromine for a mood boost

How do you have your coffee?

Crystal Healing

I have really been into crystals over the past year and diving more in how to use them. I came across an awesome podcast last week that interviewed Heather Askinosie on the healing power of crystals. LISTEN HERE. I have been following Heather’s website, Energy Muse, for a bit now so it was awesome to hear her on the podcast. The point that resonated the most was how to program your crystals to work for you. I have read all about cleansing and knowing where they are sourced; however, setting an intention for each crystal took it to a whole new level.

heatheraprilhero-2.jpg

Quick rewind…I was absolutely worn out about a month ago. When I do not get enough sleep or feel pulled in every direction, my mind, body, and soul break. I had hit my cusp. Thankfully, I made time for myself one Wednesday evening and spent a solid hour cleansing my crystals and setting intentions for each individually. It turned out to be very powerful. The crystal, Selenite, is used to cut energetic cords and let go of things that are holding you back. When programming and using this stone along with the Rose Quartz and Malachite, I started crying. I channeled my tears and energy to Jesus and filled the empty holes with light in every cell of my being. 

A little background on me. I grew up in a Baptist Christian home. Went to a Baptist private university. It taught me so much. Everything is conservative and the talk of me using crystals is out in left field. However, programming the crystals and using the selenite turned out to be so powerful. I have not felt this honest, vulnerable, and cleansed in a while. My energy source is Jesus Christ. When I am meditating, saying prayers, or whatever verbiage you prefer to use, that is where my energy and mind are focused. That’s where I find help, guidance, and peace. The crystals allowed me to have a tangible source to channel my thoughts and emotions and are now used as a daily reminder of my intentions.

I program this…

  • ROSE QUARTZ to open my heart to receive and express the energy of love.

  • MALACHITE to heal my heart and be receptive to love.

  • CITRINE to turn me into a Money Magnet.

  • AMETHYST for contentment and to radiate positivity.

  • JADE to attract good health and open my heart chakra

  • GREEN QUARTZ to bring empathy. 

  • UNAKITE to bring vision.

  • CARNELIAN to bring confidence, creativity, courage, and clarity.

  • RED AVENTURINE to focus my energy to get things done.

  • RUBY (necklace) to balance my heart and bring abundance.

  • PERU OPAL (necklace) to enhance self worth and release inhibitions.

Do you use crystals? Tonight is a full moon so show them some love!

Reality Check

Body Image

A picture is worth a thousand words. It’s amazing how you can feel like a Goddess one second and then beat yourself up the next all because of a picture. Whether it's a bad angle, goofy pose, standing versus sitting, good lighting versus bad lighting, that one little change can wreak havoc on your mindset. I give you exhibit A to the right. Only 24 hours difference in the three pictures. One moment I'm scoffing at the way I look and the next I'm loving what I see. I share this to make a point and give us (very much myself) a reality check. Give yourself a break and let it be.

One of the favorite things of my career is the ability to train consistently, be on my feet, and stay active through out the day; however, the most challenging part of my career is feeling I need to look perfect. Ripped 6-pack abs, perfectly shaped legs and ass, slender arms, the list could go on.

Full disclosure and honesty. I can look in the mirror and take a picture and love every ounce of my being and within the same day feel the complete opposite. I have always struggled with keeping my mid-section lean. I don’t want to pull the card of “it’s my genetics,” but when everyone in your family battles with leanness in the mid-section regardless of how consistently they train and eat on point, then there is a little truth to it.

However, what I am very present to is loving my body and truly owning every beautiful imperfection. Kicking ass in the gym. Being able to hip thrust close to 300lb, squat heavy, sprint, run bleachers, rock out dips and push ups like a boss, and even do pull-ups. Choosing to not obsess over food. This use to be a BIG battle, but by the grace of God it has improved leaps and bounds every passing year, which now means I can enjoy shared french fries at Revelery brunch, the occasional chips and salsa, margaritas, mimosas, and truly doing LIFE with my friends and family the way I choose. 

So how do I battle negative thoughts when they come blazing in hot? 

  1. Say what I’m thinking and feeling out loud. This is not a whisper but a straight up bold statement. 
  2. Own it. But, then I quickly have a reality check and state what is true. Even if it’s something I do want to improve upon, I switch to constructive criticism and remove self doubt and hate. 
  3. Create a new story and one that is truth. This could be a paradigm shift if it is creating a new behavior, or it could be a simple reality check and realizing how completely irrational I am thinking and behaving.

By having a raw and honest conversation with my sis this week, it inspired me to share openly and with some rawness. I am so thankful I was able to do the steps above with her on the phone and get present to how blessed, healthy, vibrant, and beautiful my life truly is. 

 

Singleness

I recently finished reading, "This is Me Letting You Go" by Heidi Prebe. A paragraph in the chapter titled- What They Don't Tell you About Love- really hit home, and I re-read the passage multiple times because it resonated so deeply.

They don't tell you that you'll forget to be loved. That at some point in the process of reaching and striving and growing and moving always forward in your life, you'll let love slide by the wayside. That you'll subtly forget what it's like to be touched, to be treasured, to be adored and admired by another human being with a mind and a body every bit as real as yours. They don't map out the dull, inconsolable ache that grows inside of you the longer you let yourself forget that you're desiring of love. They don't tell you that you need it like water and air and that no matter how hard you try to prove the opposite, a tiny part of you will always be the smallest bit unfulfilled without it. 

In this chapter of my life I am embracing every bit of singleness. The ability to come and go as I please. No one to worry about or check in with throughout the day. Shimmying as I see fit and doing exactly what I want. 

M&M

However, I know that is why the passage above resonated so deeply. In the midst of all the fun that comes with doing your own thing, there is a piece that is missing. Some days more then others I can pin point it so vividly, and then other weeks it shows up out of no where. The mindless texts and vicious cycle of online dating is excruciating. The "Peter Pan" men who seem to have overtaken Austin is growing more and more every week. We're in the dating trenches.

I will not let the thrill, butterflies, and excitement that come with dating disappear for me. I refuse to become jaded and give up, but choosing to refocus my energy on relationships that bring real value. I am ready more then ever to be touched, to be treasured, to be adored and admired by another human being with a mind and a body every bit as real as mine, and share all the amazing, crazy, and hard things with that special man. My partner in crime. 

What are your thoughts? Does the excerpt strike a nerve in your soul?

Pumpkin Fudge

I love anything with pumpkin regardless if it's the fall or summer. I came across this healthy version of Pumpkin Fudge and thought it sounded delish!

Pumpkin Fudge

Ingredients: (makes 12 squares)
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/3 cup coconut butter
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
pinch of sea salt
1/2 cup chopped, toasted walnuts (optional)

Directions:
Line 8x8 pan with parchment paper. Combine the pumpkin, coconut butter, coconut oil, vanilla, maple syrup, pumpkin pie spice, and salt in a food processor and puree until smooth. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the toasted walnuts evenly over the top if you prefer a crunch. Place the pan in the fridge for 1 hour, or until firm. Slice into squares and serve.

The Pudge lasts up to 10 days-- that is if you can keep it around that long.

Meet me in the Middle

If this blog post could play music, "The Middle" by Zedd, Maren Morris, & Grey would be playing, and I would be jamming out. The lyrics encompass a relationship; however, the premise of the song goes hand in hand with this excerpt. 

SJP

Within the past few years I have become very present to the ever changing stages of womanhood. I am fortunate to be surrounded by all types of women (single, married, with kids, without kids, divorced) given my personal training business, and each are on a different journey. Going from brand new in a career and trying to find one's way, to getting in a serious relationship, to diving head first in owning a business, to getting married and possibly having kids. With each milestone comes amazing stories and a new purpose, but also an unspoken judgement between each other. 

I am baffled at how being single (aka: no husband nor kids) seems to mean that you must accommodate to the ones who have these things. Why is it that my plans of hanging with friends, staying up late working, or simply wanting to lay by a pool or sit on a patio and enjoy a cocktail are considered second rate? It is my mission for women to be empowered and confident in whatever path they take, and I take it to heart when we feel the opposite. I would love to get a phone call and have a friend or family member want to meet me somewhere with their kiddo that is not 100% on their time frame and only ideal for them. Time is precious. I believe it is just as important to sacrifice single gal plans as it is to sacrifice kiddo nap time. To think opposite is not fair. Meet me in the middle. 

As women, I long for us to meet in the middle, to respect each other and our choices. Our lives are different and we are on our own journey. Ideas of fun may have shifted, and I believe it's important for both parties to understand we’re finding happiness in our own way. I am excited and ready to meet my partner-in-crime and connect with friends and family who are in that stage of life, but until then, I am going to walk in my single woman shoes and continue to embrace life with every bit of vigor, love, and gusto.

Success Story: KASEY

Kasey

I met Kasey at RetailMeNot about 6 months ago. He was brand new to lifting weights as his background for working out focused more on running. Within a short amount of time of adding in the corporate wellness Boot Camp and Strength Training along with 1x/week small group personal training, he has seen awesome results! Body composition has improved, and he is significantly stronger. From performing 1 strict pull-up to now repping out multiple sets of 8 reps. His back squat has increased by almost 100lb and all his vertical and horizontal presses have gone up. Needless to say, Kasey is a very hard worker with a great attitude. I truly enjoy the days we get to train!

How has small group training help you reach your goals?

Small group training has helped me reach my goals in several ways. The most impactful has been the 1:1 time where I actually learned how to train. Prior to working out with Megan, I had no idea what was what in a gym. Now I feel confident that I can navigate one and not feel like I have no idea what I'm doing. The workouts that Megan puts together are full body and hit most muscles group. I love this because it ensures no muscle is left out.

Body composition results.

Since I started training with Megan, I have put on ~12 pounds. I've gained several inches in various part of my body: Shoulders: 2", Chest: 1/2", Thighs: 2", Arms: 1.5"

List 3 keys to your success.

  • Persistence - Keeping up with the workouts, pushing myself to go, and making it the priority.
  • Megan - Without Megan and her fabulous attitude I wouldn't have felt comfortable going after my goals.  
  • Support - Having a support network that encourages me to work out and be the healthiest I can.

    What have others said is the biggest change in you?

    From a co-worker: YOUR MUSCLES - but seriously, people have definitely noticed a change in my appearance. They can tell I've put in a lot of work :) My friends and family have also said that it has changed my lifestyle. Now I consistently work out 4-5 times a week. Prior to working out, I didn't really used to think about what I ate, now I try to make sure I get a good balance of fats, protein, carbs, etc. 

      Overall, I really love the change that I have seen in my body after several months of small group training. I feel so much better both in my free-time and at work.

       

      Unplug

      Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes...including you.

      That quote hit me like a ton of bricks. I easily get caught up in crossing things off my check list, creating something new within my business, reading/learning/studying my craft; yet it is the times where I unplug, check out, and simply Be are where things fall into place. I am becoming more present to this every week. I have made it a priority to take a long walk on Saturdays as often as I can over the past few months. The walks are either with a dear friend or by myself. It's chill, fun, encouraging, and therapeutic. 

      unplug

      I am so thankful to have close girl friends and guys I've recently dated that create a space for me to veg out and Netflix and chill =). For some reason, it is so difficult to lay on my couch and do absolutely nothing. I feel better about myself if I am watching something educational on YouTube, reading a self-development book, or simply working. I am hard wired like that. 

      However, my Type A, go-go personality needs these quiet times to unplug and center. Typing that statement and saying it out loud resonates. In my late 20s and early 30s, I would literally work myself into the ground trying to create a business and a brand. Now I have shifted to work smarter, take solid breaks to unplug, and truly appreciate quality of life over finding the next new client or project. The more I unplug, the more clear headed I get, and more opportunities come my way.

      I challenge you to unplug, even if it's only for 5 minutes each day, and see how your mind, body, and soul feels. I guarantee you will not be disappointed. 

      Growth Oriented vs Goal Oriented

      For anyone that knows me, they know I am a big believer in goal setting. I started this practice at a young age due to my involvement in sports. My mom and dad encouraged us to set goals for what we wanted to accomplish that year in the respective sports we were competing. I saw the fruits of my labor at a young age by simply having a focused set of goals, and a plan to get there.

      Growth vs Fixed

      Now as an adult, I continue to implement the same SMART goal setting tools I used as an adolescent. However, there are times I find myself paralyzed in the process. Is this a scary enough BigHairyAudaciousGoal (BHAG)? Am I too caught up in the steps to get there? Am I still living life to the fullest while chasing after my dreams? Are my goals too selfish? Am I living large? Does reaching this goal define me? These are some of the questions that enter my mind when mapping out my goals.

      This is where a growth-oriented mindset has been a paradigm shift for me. I must remain a continual learner and remain growth oriented. I think of SMART goals as being my actions steps as a growth oriented person, and it frees me from placing blame and getting stuck in achieving my dreams.

      Below are 15 Benefits of the Growth Mindset. Check out this article to read in greater detail about each benefit.

      1. Enjoy life, even when you're not good at it
      2. Improve your self-insight and self-esteem
      3. Improve your relationships
      4. Never feel stupid when learning
      5. Never stress about being perfect
      6. Strengthen your confidence
      7. Lower your risk of depression
      8. Be better at taking responsibility for your life
      9. See single events as just that
      10. Increase your resilience to labels and stereotypes
      11. See setbacks as useful
      12. Ditch the stress from constantly trying to prove yourself
      13. Enjoy putting in time and effort, rather then fearing them
      14. Improve your company
      15. Avoid feelings of superiority

      I am encouraged to see myself relating with well over half of these benefits. Are you goal oriented or growth oriented? Why?

      6-Week Clean Eating Ladder

      If you have participated in training with me, there is no doubt you've heard me discuss nutrition. As much as we want to believe that if we workout we can look exactly how we want, this is rarely true for most.  Below is a 6 week clean-eating ladder with each week building upon the next.

      I know there are those few people who can jump in cold turkey and eat super clean and not think twice about it; however, for the ones of us who need structure and a step-by-step process to change our eating habits, I think balance and small changes over time lead to tremendous success. Knowledge about nutrition is great, but if you have no clue how to implement that knowledge you are spinning a vicious cycle.

      PROTEIN: fish, beef, chicken, pork, wild game, eggs, protein powder

      FAT: Avocado, olive oil, coconut oil, nuts/seeds, avocado oil, grass-fed butter, ghee, olives

      VEGETABLES: anything green & leafy, carrots, peppers, beets, artichokes, onions, broccoli, cabbage

      CARBOHYDRATES (aka: FRUIT & STARCH): berries, apples, cherries, bananas, grapes, sweet potato, white/red potato, rice, quinoa, beans

      • Week 1: protein packed breakfast with veggies, carbs, and fat. Drink a minimum of 1 gallon of water daily.
      • Week 2: same as week 1 + protein packed mid-afternoon snack.
      • Week 3: same as week 1 & week 2, + 3 salads per week at lunch or dinner. Salad includes lots of kale, spinach, berries, beets, olives, avocado, chicken/beef/fish, artichokes, mushrooms, olive oil & vinegar as dressing, etc. No cheese on salad.
      • Week 4: same as week 1, week 2, week 3 + max of 1 dessert a week
      • Week 5: same as week 1, week 2, week 3, week 4 + 3 dinners per week full of protein, vegetables/carbs, and fat. No bread, pasta at these 3 dinners.
      • Week 6: same as week 1, week 2, week 3, week 4, week 5 + 5 salads per week at lunch or dinner & 5 dinners per week full of protein, vegetables/carbs, and fat. No bread, pasta at these 5 dinners.
      • Week 7 and on: Maintenance. Apply the guidelines from week 6 and challenge yourself to go an entire 6 days of eating clean for all meals. 
      • If you are ready to up the ante, contact me fo nutrition coaching, 1-on-1, online, or group personal training. Share your successes in the comments section below. No excuses.

      Affirmations

      Affirmations

      Affirmation is defined as emotional support or encouragement. Over the past year I have been reading daily affirmations while I brush my teeth in the morning. It's been an easy add-on to my day, because clearLLLLLy I am going to brush my teeth, but now it is a very intentional 2 minutes. I have 13 index cards with powerful statements written on them that encompass exactly what I want in, for, and a part of my life. I fully believe if you cannot see yourself having something or being someone then there is no way it will become a reality. There is a powerful connection that goes from the heart, to the mind, to fruition.

      The picture above is a screenshot of a few of my daily affirmations. I put the note card on the top of the stack each morning based on what my main focus is for that day. This 2-minute practice has been a game changer for me! I have seen transformations in my relationships, business, and spiritual life. I view myself in a different light. I am thankful and love my body more then I ever have. I see myself as more then a personal trainer & nutrition coach, but a business owner.

      Do you have a daily practice? If so, share below in the comments section. If not, I challenge you to pick 3 areas of your life you want to focus on and write an affirmation and read it daily. Check back in 30 days and let me know what has changed!

      Brussel Sprouts

      Brussel Sprouts

      I ebb and flow with vegetables I eat on the reg. I love brussel sprouts but typically only eat them when I go out to eat since I never can replicate how good they taste at a restaurant. However, last week I made the best tasting brussel sprouts and had to share!

      DIRECTIONS: Grease the baking sheet with ghee or grass-fed butter. Salt and pepper the brussel sprouts and douse with coconut aminos. Bake on 400-degrees for 25 mins.

      Water & Fluoride

      If you are unaware of the harmful effects of fluoride, then check out this article. Also, Fluoride Free Austin, is a great site to stay up to date on the latest research and happenings. In a nutshell, how toxic is fluoride--

      • It is a component of rat poison and many other common pesticides
      • It is corrosive enough to etch glass
      • ŸFluoridated toothpastes carry a poison warning on the label
      • The EPA prohibits discharging fluorides directly into natural waterways, including the ocean.  Fluoride disposal is regulated under the rules for hazardous waste.
      • ŸHandlers are required to wear a NIOSH-approved cartridge respirator with full-face shield, tight-fitting chemical splash goggles, and acid-proof protective clothing, gloves and shoes.
      Fluoride Free Austin

      Needless to say, I do not want this crap (fluoride) in my water, especially since I am someone who consumes around 80oz of water daily.

      There are multiple avenues to get fluoride-free water:

      1. If you are looking for an inexpensive way, then make a trip to your grocery store, purchase BPA free jugs, and fill them up weekly. At HEB in Austin, the fluoride free water is only $.35 a gallon; Sprout's, Wheatsville, and Whole Foods also offer fluoride free water refills.
      2. If you own your house, you can put an entire system on your water that removes fluoride, but this is quite the investment.
      3. Lastly, this is a great water pitcher that you can refill that removes all the impurities.

      MOST BOTTLED WATER CONTAINS FLUORIDE. If it does not state that it's fluoride-free, then do not waste your money. Pick one of the options and get to drinking fluoride-free water. 

      Digestion & Gut Health

      It’s safe to say that you’re only as healthy as your gut. The gut is the “first line of defense” because 80% of the body’s immune cells are in the gut.

      Signs of Poor Digestion:

      1. Frequent and prolonged colds and flu- Viruses and bacteria are always around. We don’t just “catch” them. Continually disturbed digestion is a breeding ground for pathogens and decreases our immunity which is when we get sick.

      2. Not sweating when you exert yourself

      3. Bad breath- “Morning breath” may be common but it is not natural. This comes from undigested food sitting in the intestines where it ferments, providing a breeding ground for disease as well as unpleasant odor and taste.

      4. Dull eyes, dark circles under the eyes, and a puffy quality to the face- Signs of undigested food fermenting in the intestines show up quickly in our physical appearance.

      5. Allergies and food intolerance- Most people think these are here to stay. We disagree! We have seen numerous clients reverse their intolerance of foods and be finished with allergies. For example, celiac disease and gluten or lactose intolerance are based in consuming foods like wheat and dairy in improper quantity, temperature, and combinations with other foods. As a result, foods that are naturally heavier and require more energy to digest (like cheese and wheat) will seem to be the problem when in fact they are not! We assume only the highest quality of these foods for consumption.

      6. Feeling tired and lethargic after a meal

      7. A lot of gurgling noises after eating

      8. Experiencing a lot of gas

      9. Feeling bloated after eating

      10. Undigested food particles in stool

      11. Constipation

      12. Loose bowel movements

      Gut Health

      Take Action:

      1. Consume fermented foods regularly. I have a couple of spoonfuls of sauerkraut daily and drink Kombucha or Kevita.
      2. Take a probiotic with multiple strains.
      3. Supplement with HCL. This is a game changer, BUT contact me before beginning to ensure you do it properly.
      4. Drink bone broth.

      Listen to your gut (no pun intended) and take time this year to get your gut healthy and thrive!