#2015 New Year New You Challenge

Jan 2015 Challenge collage 5

Happy Sunday Funday! I’m working on some exciting things for 2015 & I can’t WAIT to start! Up 1st is resolutions: we all make them and we all plan to stick to them right? 45% of American’s make resolutions every year.  Only 49% of them have infrequent, unstable success and only 8% are successful at all!! (But not you, not this time! Please keep reading). The #1 Resolution is LOSE WEIGHT. Plus staying fit & healthy, spending less money & saving more, enjoying life to the fullest and spending more time with family are also in the top 10. So people sign up for gym memberships as part of their resolutions but the gyms sell them with the expectation that only 18% of them will be used on a consistent basis! Save your money, I can show you how to reach those goals and save money too.

How many of these resolutions are on your list for 2015? I know several are on mine! And I know from my experience and those who I’ve worked together with that the best way to reach your goals & maintain them is by plugging into like-minded people on the same journey (or similar) who will help you stay accountable, support you & provide you with tools and the info you need to be your best YOU and get into the best SHAPE of your LIFE! That is what I want to do for you!! I am very passionate about helping others feel their very best, saving time, wasted money and truly gaining a sense of control and accomplishment over their health & fitness. I have been there. I lost so much time feeling awful, not being able to spend as much time with my kids as I wanted to because I was sick in bed or at the gym for several hours at a time waiting on machines, commuting and still not getting the results I wanted. I wasted so much money on the wrong foods. And more money on medical bills and appointments only to be given unhealthy advice and STILL didn’t get the results I wanted. I want to save you time, money and your sanity by getting you to your goals and feeling like a Rockstar!

Are you looking to clean up your nutrition and start working out regularly? Are you looking to change it up & start a new training program? Are you looking to build strength, muscle, flexibility or increase your fitness level? I can help you with all of these things!

Here’s the deal: I need 10 people who are looking to get on track, get that extra boost to their fitness & nutrition and who genuinely want to set realistic goals that they want to STICK to & MAINTAIN! Plus I can show you how to save your money on wasted food, gym memberships & gimmicks that only lighten up your wallet, not you. I want to get Amazing results by Valentine’s Day! Let’s do it together! We can make this the year that you finally realize your goals & keep it that way! No lone wolves here, just an amazing group of dynamic people joining up to make this the best year YET! HIT LIKE, COMMENT, SHARE AND SEND ME THE MESSAGE “I WANT AMAZING RESULTS” and let’s do this! Send this blog link to the people you want to challenge to JOIN you!! Thank you ❤ I am so excited to get started!


My Story

Let me start off by saying thank you. Why? Because those of you who know me now think I have always been in good shape and never had a weight problem. In fact I’ve been accused of being skinny, which I am not. I never wanted to be skinny. Wait, erase that, I used to want to be skinny. But when I became skinny something happened that I didn’t expect. I didn’t like it! YEP! I would rather be chubby than skinny. Why? Because I didn’t look good. My skin hung on me, I didn’t have good muscle tone and I swear it made me look older! Plus I was skinny fat…not sexy, not one bit!

So here’s my story. In 2000 I had my first child. After he was born I couldn’t seem to lose weight & the scale hung around 195 pounds. I worked out, tried to eat good (or so I thought) and would lose a few pounds but it would always come right back. So for the next year I started cutting back, eating less, skipping meals and doing all the unhealthy things one does when we are trying too hard to get “skinny” (I really don’t like that word). I managed to drop about 35-40 pounds and was happy about that. Then something went wrong. I rapidly gained over 60 pounds in less than 4 months. At this point nothing was taking the weight off and I was depressed. My cycles became irregular more than normal and then stopped altogether. I had lost my medical insurance and my job so I wasn’t able to afford to go and get properly checked out by my Dr. 9 months passed and nothing was changing, and I was desperate! I finally got a good job with benefits and the 1st thing I did was get checked out. It turned out that I had Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) and was borderline type 2 diabetic. I got treated for these things and lost 40 pounds, just enough to get pregnant again. After my 2nd son was born things went sideways. A month before I had my son we had been in a car accident that injured my shoulder, otherwise everything else was ok. But after my son was born my body began attacking itself and shutting down. I had no energy and could barely function. The dr’s all said it was normal for a new mom with a newborn and a 4 year old but this was far from normal. I was in constant pain. It was like my skin was on fire! I couldn’t sleep well despite being inexplicably tired all the time. My diet wasn’t great, but I felt so bad all the time I just didn’t care. And the brain fog was like being in a NyQuil walking coma all the time.

After a few months a friend recommended their PA to me so I made an appointment. She tested my hormones only to find out that they were all out of whack. At first they thought I had typical low thyroid and attempted to treat it with supplements. When that didn’t work I was referral to a Nurse Practitioner that specialized in hormonal disorders. She sent me to see a Rheumatologist based on the fact I was in horrible pain with swollen joints and based on my medical history they wanted to test me for Rheumatoid arthritis. After the blood tests came back I was told I had an autoimmune disease, but they were not sure what it was yet. My antinuclear antibody (ANA) test was 4x higher than it should have been so they thought it could be Lupus. They gave me more tests and determined I was in severe inflammation. I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia thought to have been caused by the damage from the car accident and Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis (autoimmune thyroiditis). In a nutshell total body chronic pain and inflammation that was causing my body to attack itself and my thyroid. After a few years of treatments, blood tests and thyroid medication adjustments plus a change of nutritional habits I was finally starting to feel better. My weight was around the 170-175 range and I had 2 more babies, a boy and then a girl. After my daughter was born in 2008 I had my tubes tied but within months I began having severe lower abdominal pain. My cycle was vicious to the point of disabling now. In 2009 I was a bridesmaid in a wedding and I remember hating how I felt in the dress I wore. When I saw the photos I knew I had to make a serious change! I was back up to 180 pounds and feeling terrible. I joined the gym and began walking on the treadmill 7 days a week.

I slowly started to lose the weight but I was getting bored. I had joined an online calorie tracker, in fact I signed up for 3 of them, and was restricting my calories so I would lose more. I got sick of the treadmill and started using the elliptical machines. I tried out the stationary bike but I didn’t like it so I stuck with the elliptical. A friend suggested I try the group fitness classes so I started going to PiYo & LOVED IT! It was a bit slow for my ADHD self, but I was so inflexible and weak it was good for me.

I ended up having a hysterectomy in June of 2010 because I had adenomyosis so bad I had no choice. Uterine cancer runs in my family and there was no reason to take chances. Within a few weeks I was feeling better than I had felt in over 10 years! I returned to the gym and started taking Zumba® classes. I fell in LOVE again! That’s when I realized I wanted to teach fitness classes so I started training to become an instructor. I also started weight training a few times a week, but I was still locked into the skinny mindset so I wasn’t eating properly and in fact was under eating. I dropped down to 145 pounds but I still looked in the mirror and saw my 235 pound self. I was working out several hours a day 6-7 days a week. I had become obsessed with working out and getting “skinny” (should be a 4 letter word). I got my Zumba® license and started teaching classes. My mentor & trainer had been coaching me all along to take better care of my body and I wasn’t listening enough. I started getting injured. First my upper back. Then my hips. Then both. I took some time off and started digging deep into why.

That’s when I met my coach and we started talking. A lot! She too was an instructor and had some really amazing input. By this point I had been learning to clean up my nutrition and eat properly but I still felt like something was missing. She introduced me to my first challenge group, a free 4 day focus in which we would check in daily and earn points. She recommended Shakeology at that time, but I had this awesome Whey (insert sarcasm here) and I swore I was doing just fine with my $30 investment. I ended up winning with the most points and moved on into a 2nd group. Part of my reward was a week of Shakeology. I gave it a try and my first taste – I didn’t like it! I KNOW I SHOULDN’T SAY THAT! But it’s true. I just dumped it into water and shook it up to drink it….and well it wasn’t so tasty. But let’s just be honest here – there’s plenty of foods out there that taste not so great without adding something right? Plain chicken boiled in water tastes pretty bland and unappetizing too! So my second shake was thought out more. I added unsweetened almond milk, some peanut butter and a handful of ice into the blender & BOOM it was DESSERT! But I noticed something else. I had WAY more energy. My belly bloat was gone & my digestion was regulated in a few days. They whey never did that by itself. In the 2 challenge groups I lost 10 pounds and gained energy, strength and endurance I didn’t have before! What I didn’t understand up until this point was that whey protein is really just a filler without the required carbohydrates necessary for the body to actually use it. Plus, the American diet is severely lacking whole nutrient dense foods. What I was eating may have been ok, but it wasn’t enough. (See my first post Shakeology – What’s in it & Why). When I added this one shake a day it was a total game changer!

Over my 10+ years on this journey I have learned a lot from the massive mistakes I made. I have lost 85 pounds and have kept it off for close to 6 years now. Here’s what I learned:

1- Success is created by making mistakes

2- It helps to connect with someone who understands and can help you by being supportive & motivating plus keeping you accountable

3- You MUST eat and you MUST eat real foods. Yes, Shakeology is a real food (see previous post)

4- In order to lose weight you must combine exercise and healthy nutrition. Abs are made in the kitchen!

5- You can’t out run your fork no matter how hard you TRY!

6- Working together with a group of people with similar goals is incredibly motivating

7- Having a coach that helps you with nutrition, exercise and accountability coaching creates more successful weight loss that without. In fact, people who work with a coach that incorporates these things have are 89% more likely to keep that weight off 1 year later as opposed to those who do it alone.

8- Shakeology is great for anyone and fits into all nutrition plans. It changed everything for me & killed my cravings!

I have lived the struggle, in fact it almost killed me. I spent many years overweight, depressed, sick and miserable. I tried several things but where I went wrong every single time was trying to do it alone. By not reaching out to others I had nobody to motivate me when I didn’t want to work out. I didn’t have someone to suggest something that might work better, or share a great healthy recipe with, or to share my successes with. So time & time again the weight came back.

Here are my pics. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but to me they say everything! Earlier this year I had a setback and gained 20 pounds. I wasn’t happy about it so I did something about it – 21 Day Fix & PiYo. I became a PiYo Live instructor and have never been happier, stronger or healthier with the combination of fitness, nutrition and the support of my amazing coach.

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I’m staring a new challenge group for 2015, but space is limited. Mainly because I want to ensure I can be available to all the participants in this group so they can be successful. Send me a message with your contact details & say I’M IN! We can do this, let’s talk!

Shakeology – What’s in it & why?

shakeo chart

Recently I read this amazing article from Darin Olien, the creator of Shakeology. He traveled the planet to find the best ingredients to make this super food, and he explains why it’s an important addition to anyone’s diet.

It really digs deep into the importance of whole foods in our diet. The majority of the food grown today is no longer nutrient dense due to over farming, depleted soil, and it is replacing nutrient dense crops with inferior non-nutrient crops. Not to mention the over use of dangerous pesticides and chemicals (round-up with that wheat bagel anyone?) and the fact that “food” sold commercially is so overly processed it barely resembles it’s whole form. Our bodies hardly recognize it let alone put it to use. Darin made the analogy that our food supply is basically “watered down” and putting non-nutritious food in your body is like “putting dirty gas in a Ferrari”. Ouch.

If we want our health, body, and energy level to improve you have to stop putting dirty fuel in and replace it with healthy fuel. Shakeology was a huge game changer for me for so many reasons. It cleared up my digestive disorders, reduced belly bloat, my skin cleared up so much I have been told I look younger (glowing too!), my hair & nails grow stronger & longer, I don’t get sick very often, my fitness level has double to tripled and I don’t have the inflammation or joint problems I once was battling with. That has to do with the fact that the ingredients are whole, nutritious, minimally processed plus the enzymes that have improved my cellular regeneration (think, quicker recovery, faster cell turn over with healthier cells so skin, hair etc are gorgeous) and the pre/probiotics that help the gut flourish with the healthy bacteria our body depends on to live. A healthy gut means less chances of weight problems, metabolic disorders, decrease in depression, improved nutrient uptake into the body, plus this is where the body creates Vitamin K (blood clotting, building strong bones, preventing heart disease) & Vitamin B12 (crucial to normal nerve & brain function as well as blood formation).

So before you spend too much money on inferior, cheaper products ask yourself: Is the health cost worth the lack of nutrition and quality? Shakeology really is a high quality and proven healthy nutrient dense meal that has the perfect balance of protein to carbs so your body can actually use it. Stop wasting your time, money & calories on cheap whey. If you aren’t combining it with the right ratio of carbs your body isn’t utilizing it. And several commercial products are heavily processed, full of unnatural chemicals and are doing your body more harm than good. If you are busy and don’t always have the time to get all your servings of fruits, vegetables and healthy probiotics, prebiotics, fiber (most western diets lack all of these things) then do yourself a favor: skip that $8 drive through super sized meal of 1100 heart attacking calories or pass on that $5 coffee drink with up to 70 or more grams of sugar in it. Instead, replace it with a once a day super dose of pure nutrition that has the equivalent of 5 trips to the salad bar of veggies in it and tastes like dessert for around $4 a serving. Your health, wellness, gut, brain, body, fitness and happiness will THANK YOU. Take the 30 day challenge you will feel the difference.

Darin Olien’s Article:


Shakeology Info:


I’m starting a New Year New YOU Challenge group with 21 days of fitness, accountability, coaching, encouragement, recipes, tips and fun all in time for a better healthier New Year. Want to join me? Send me a message, let’s talk!