It’s OK to not be OK

Hi, it’s been a while, and in the wake of Kate Spades tragic death yesterday, I wanted to reach out and tell you that it’s OK to not be OK. I’ve dealt with anxiety for months now, and not just your run of the mill nervous/excited type of anxiety. More like can’t get out of bed, can’t sleep, teeth grinding, can’t deal with life type of anxiety.

We don’t talk about mental health enough, as fitness professionals or just as people. I may post lots of smiling sweaty selfie pics on Insta, or post about my fabulous workout, healthy meal or whatever, but truth be told I’ve been dealing with some hard AF issues. I’ve finally reached a point where I can get my head above water most days, but I still struggle. If you’re going through something similar, or have been through something similar know that it’s ok to be sad, depressed, anxious, angry, unhappy etc. Talk to someone, call a friend, family member, reach out to a professional. If no one told you today: you are strong, you are capable and you are loved. Reach out. Get help. No one is alone in this world, and there are resources to help you. Suicide affects people from every walk of life and it is not the answer to your struggles however large or difficult they may be.

The National Suicide Hotline number is 1-800-273-8255. 

If you want to read more about my struggles, you can continue reading below. If you need someone to talk to or more importantly just listen, call me, I am here for you. I’ve sat on this blog post for months, but hope that by sharing my story someone out there will know that its ok to struggle, its ok to need and seek help. Life is not always sunshine and rainbows, but it’s the darker times that make us stronger, and let our light shine a little brighter when we come out of it.

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March Madness

Hi! It has been too long since I posted a blog post. I’ve been struggling hard with writers block, and struggling with what to say. I’ve been working on a body positivity post and how I deal with pressure to look a certain way as a personal trainer. I’ll be sharing more soon, so stay tuned. Did you know that March is one of my favorite months of the year?  Baseball is back, St. Patricks Day is upon us, daylight savings time and Spring!  While its currently raining and freezing in NorCal, I hope we will be blessed with sunshine and warmer temps soon. This month is going to be nuts: business has picked up, I have 2 races, a bridal shower for my cousin in law, a baby shower for my good friend and I’m traveling at the end of the month for Coeur Camp. March Madness for sure!

This Saturday is the first of the Giant Race Series Races and while I’m literally crying that I can’t be there in person, I’m excited to race it virtually. If you haven’t seen my Insta posts lately, I was selected as a race ambassador this year, along with a bunch of other awesome runners. The Giant Race was one of my first races and I’m so excited to be completing the Series Sweep this year. The medals this year are so good! If you want to participate with me you MUST register and run the Scottsdale race this Saturday either in person or virtually. Use my code: BRIANA2018 to save $5 off any race.

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Friday Favorites 2/2/18

This week’s edition of Friday Favorites is all about some tough love things I learned on Whole30. Mostly I learned that I can do hard things and when it comes down to it, following the ‘rules’ is really not that hard.

No added sugar.
No grains.
No alcohol.
No pancakes, cookies, cake, donuts, ice cream, chocolate etc. 

This sounds amazing right?! haha.

You can do anything for 30 days. I promise. If I did this I know you are capable of doing it as well. Do this for you, because your best friend is doing it too or because you’ve tried at everything else and haven’t been successful. There is some tough love in this post, but know that it comes from a place of love.  I truly believe if I can complete a Whole30 you can too.

  1. You won’t actually die if you go more than 3 hours without a meal. I’m a snacker. Like snacks on snacks on snacks kind of snacker. Sweet, salty, healthy, not healthy I’m not too picky. I used to ALWAYS have snacks in my car, my bag, my purse. A lot of ‘diets’ insist that you need snack to avoid overeating at meals. Guess what?! You are not going to starve. Eat three balanced meals per day, stopping when you are full. The only exception, you may need to add some fuel pre/post workout if they last longer than 60 minutes.
  2. Whole30 is so much more than a diet. It’s a complete change in how you approach, shop for and prepare your food. It’s about buying local, fresh and sustainable foods. Fruits, veggies, nuts, and seeds, aka things that grow in dirt. Not shiny, packaged, chemical laden, lab-made food. You can eat meat, you can eat a lot of meat, or you can actually do this as a vegan/vegetarian. There are so many possibilities and so many delicious, fast and easy recipes just waiting to be whipped up in your kitchen. If you can boil water or cook an egg, you can make most of these recipes. DSC_0330
  3. Fill half your plate with vegetables. This isn’t rocket science, no matter what diet you’re on or whatever food group you’ve decided is bad, vegetables are always in. Steamed, sautéed, roasted, or raw it really doesn’t matter. I prefer leafy green or cruciferous veggies like broccoli and brussel sprouts to carrots and peas. If you think you hate vegetables, roast them in the oven with a little olive oil, salt and pepper until they are golden brown and crispy. You’ll never look at broccoli the same way.
  4. Drinking your coffee black is not hard as queen bee Melissa Hartwig would say. Although somedays it’s definitely better with some NutPods or vanilla bean ghee stirred in. If you prefer a skinny white mocha with extra whip, ask yourself if you’d willing eat a king sized candy bar every day for breakfast on top of whatever else you usually eat. My guess is no. So please just stop with the sugary beverages in the morning. Drink a cup of coffee, tea or hot water, make yourself a real breakfast and start the day fueled and ready for anything.

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    My favorite Whole30 Breakfast: Greens, Potatoes, compliant bacon or sausage, avocado and a runny egg.

  5. I can’t live without “BLAH BLAH BLAH” I promise you, you can live without whatever food first came to mind. I can live without chocolate, I don’t ever want to, but I can. I can say to my favorite cookies, cake, burger, wine etc because I want to. I wanted whole30 to be successful. I wanted to get my health back on track, because I owe it to myself to try. I am working on being the best version of myself. For me that was trying Whole30 and committing to a full 30 days. For you that might mean one less coffee run this week.
  6. Bonus: Self care is so important, you should not be rewarding yourself with a stale break room donut, or hitting the drive thru because you “earned it.” How about treating yourself to an Inspiralizer so you can make veggie noodles on demand? Or a cast iron skillet? Maybe a week of Blue Apron or Territory meals because life and you don’t have time to shop/cook this week? That workout class you’ve been dying to try? Or the essential oil your friend recommended? Treat yourself with things that will improve your wellness or feel good. A bouquet of flowers or new candle always brightens my mood! DSC_0325

Whatever it is that is holding you back from trying Whole30 or going out for a run or heading to the gym, put it away. Lock it up in a box and throw it away. You don’t need that kind of negativity in your life.

You deserve to eat real food.

You deserve to move your body every day.

You are loved.

You are worth it.

Excuses do not serve you. They have no place in your life. Get out of your own way. Maybe you went into the New Year with big goals, resolutions or intentions and failed miserably the first week. Don’t let the rest of the year go by because of one slip up or mistake. Make February your month, own it, even if the groundhog sees his shadow and we have 6 more weeks of winter.

Love and take care of yourself so that you can give and receive the love of others. I believe in you!

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Friday Favorites: 1/26/18

Happy Friday! I spent this last week focusing on self care to expand on my Whole30 experience since the diet aspect of it is starting to feel like second nature. Whole30 has helped me clean up my diet, fight my sugar dragon, and realize that I need to fuel my body with the best possible nutrition. However health is about so much more than eating right and getting enough exercise. I don’t talk about wellness often enough I realized, with my clients or with myself, but it’s time to start. Wellness is a balance of seven aspects: physical, social, spiritual, emotional, intellectual, environmental, and occupational well-being. I challenged myself this week to think about how I’m taking care of all the aspects, not just my physical wellness. Here are some questions I asked myself that I also encourage you to assess:

Am I getting enough sleep?
What am I doing to reduce stress?
Are my finances in order?
Am I connecting with my friends and family?

Click through for a few of my favorite tips for taking care of each of the seven aspects of wellness. Read More


Friday Favorites 1/19/18

Happy Friday! It’s been a crazy week, we started fostering a 3 year old weenie dog, Briella, on Monday and she’s turned our home upside down! We’re so in love with her already and so happy we get to spend the next few months with her. Oscar’s not quite as thrilled with her but they’ve been caught snuggling a few times.

A few weeks ago I posted a photo of my grocery haul from 365 by Whole Foods (a more accessible version of Whole Foods). I scored big time on some produce thanks to their rewards program and a 20% off coupon. They reached out asking if they could repost my photo and of course I said yes. Fast forward to this week when they posted it and  I was kind of shocked at how many negative comments there were on their inflated prices. I knew this weeks favorites had to be a post about saving money at the grocery store.

While I know first hand shopping at Whole Foods typically means “whole paycheck,” I was pleasantly surprised by the prices on my most recent visit to 365. Even without the coupon this would have cost me about $45, not bad for a full weeks worth of mostly organic produce! Click through after the photo to see what I stocked up on and my tips for saving $$

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Friday Favorites 1/12/18

Happy almost weekend! This week’s favorites are some of the recipes I’ve been cooking up on the Whole30. With food this good it hardly feels like a ‘diet’ or a reset. The food is that good! I won’t lie, I would really like a huge chunk of chocolate.

Racing this past weekend at the Hot Chocolate 15k was no easy feat, they were literally handing out chocolate chips, M&M’s and marshmallows at the aid stations. I grabbed my finishers medal and headed out, I didn’t want to be tempted by the huge mug of hot chocolate, fondue and other treats they give to participants at the finish line. If you haven’t done a Hot Chocolate race, I would definitely recommend it, check in and packet pickup were seamless and the race was really well organized.

 

I branched out of my comfort zone this week and tried a few new things mixed in with some old favorites. Click through to check them out!  Read More


Friday Favorites 1/5/18

We made it through the first week of 2018! How are you feeling? Are you sticking to those New Year’s Intentions/Goals/Resolutions? Did you know that more than half of all resolutions fail?! The key to making and keeping those resolutions is to set SMART goals, I love this New York Times article on the topic.

One of my goals is to complete a Whole30, so far I’m doing pretty well, and its going much better than expected. The fatigue is starting to set in, but my sugar hangover hasn’t been too bad. The Whole30 is NOT a diet, more of a way for me to kick my sugar habit and get back to a healthier way of eating that I prefer. I am not doing it to lose weight, I’m doing it for my health. Yes it’s a drastic change from what most of us are used to, but isn’t eating real food better than sucking down protein shakes, eating chemically processed foods, detoxing, or restricting calories?

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This weeks favorites are mostly things helping make the Whole30 a little easier and a few products I’m loving. The workout move at the bottom is FIRE, add it to leg day, aka Wednesday of this months Total Body Toner Moves.  Click through to see what I’m loving this week.  Read More


January 2018 Intentions

I recently saw a post on Instagram about making intentions for the new year instead of resolutions. A resolution is “the act of solving a problem”, while an intention is a “thing intended; an aim or a plan” according to the dictionary. I love the idea of setting intentions and it’s something I plan to do for each month of the year as opposed to setting a bunch for the year and then forgetting about them mid February. Click through to read more about my goals for January.

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Friday Favorites: 12/29

This edition of Friday Favorites brings you my some of my favorite moments of 2017. It’s been an adventure filled year and I’m so thankful for all of the things I was able to experience. From graduating college, completing an Ironman, starting a business, to a solo adventure in Europe, it was hard to pick just 5 things. Click through to see my top five moments of 2017.  Read More


Friday Favorites 12/15

Christmas is just 10 days away and Hanukkah is well underway! What are your plans for the holidays? Are you traveling to see family, hosting friends, or hiding under the covers waiting for the madness to pass? Instead of fighting the crowds at the mall, or clicking like crazy on Amazon, why not make a few simple and meaningful gifts for your loved ones this year? This week I’m sharing 5 of my favorite homemade gifts that can be made with things you probably already have on hand.  Read More