Blog

Fiber Fueled, Health and Wellness, Nutrition, Recipe

Mediterranean Grain Salad

Ingredients:
1 cup uncooked farro 
1 cup chickpeas
1 large tomato diced
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
1 medium yellow bell pepper, chopped
½ cup seeded and chopped cucumber
¼ cup sliced Kalamata olives
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
 
Zesty Lemon Dressing:
 
1 tsp freshly grated lemon zest
¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 medium garlic clove, minced
1 tsp Dijon mustard
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tbsp olive oil
 
Instructions:

  1. Make the grain salad: Bring 3 cups water to a boil in medium saucepan over medium-high heat and add the farro. Cover. Reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes, until the farro is tender. Drain and rinse under cold water and set aside.
  2. Combine the cooked farro, chickpeas, tomato, red and yellow bell peppers, cucumber, olives and parsley in a large bowl and toss together. Set aside. 
  3. Make the dressing: In a separate small bowl, whisk together the lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, Dijon, and a generous pinch of salt and pepper until well combined, then slowly drizzle in the olive oil. 
  4. Assemble: Toss the dressing with the grain salad until well combined, adding more salt and pepper, as desired. Store in the fridge. Leftovers will keep for 2 to 3 days in the fridge. 

This recipe is from the book, Fiber Fueled by Dr. Will Bulsiewicz. It is delicious, light, and easy to make for lunch or as a side for dinner with some grilled chicken or steak! Enjoy!

Fitness, Goals, Gratitude, Health and Wellness, Mid-Year Check In, Mindfulness, Personal Development, Perspective, Pursuing your dreams

We’re HALFWAY Through 2021!

Where are you at?!

Every January I set intentions and goals for the upcoming year. In recent years, I have been extremely specific about my annual goals and the steps it’ll take for me to accomplish them. I look at them frequently throughout the year to ensure I am on track but each July I take a good, hard and honest look at the goals I set, my progress thus far and if they are still relevant to me and my dreams. 

My midyear check-in is about reviewing the following:

  • where am I at in the process of meeting my goals?
  • what MUST I do over the next 6 months to reach my goals?
  • if I have reached a goal, can I level up in that area, if desired?
  • do my goals still feel attainable, or do they need to shift a bit – make bigger or a bit smaller?
  • how am I feeling about my progress?
  • what am I surprised by?
  • what has been the hardest step(s) towards reaching my goals? How will/have I overcome it?
  • what is the feeling I want to embody at the end of 2021?

This process can be a motivating wake-up call to maintain the fire I set in January. Sitting here typing this and looking at the goals I set in January, I can celebrate the fact that I have already accomplished a few of them, while simultaneously recognizing that I haven’t dedicated much time to others. 

This opportunity of a midyear check-in allows me to shift my focus a bit, if needed and maintain the course. 

Did you set goals/intentions at the beginning of the year? If so, how are you doing on progress? 

Want support? Reach out, I’m happy to help!

There’s STILL six months in this year! What do you want to achieve by January 2022? And more importantly, what feeling do you want to embody?

Keep going, you’re worth it.

Fitness

July Newsletter – My Protectors

A little food for thought, a little personal share and a little insight on this beautiful start to July. 

Full transparency…recently, I have been feeling some feelings. Hear me out…and let me share with you this process.

What I had been feeling up until recently is an overwhelm of anger, irritation and frustration. It has felt choking, contracting and suffocating. I have felt it in my neck and in my throat and the more angry I got, the tighter the hands around my neck and chest squeezed.

These feelings of anger are old coping mechanisms. These feelings are protectors to the parts of me that were triggered; I was feeling unseen, unheard and under appreciated. So instead of feeling those raw emotions and being vulnerable, I chose anger. 

The protector stood in front of my part, the little girl part of me that felt unseen. The anger protected the rawness of my vulnerability.

I’m sharing this with you because we all get triggered and the beautiful thing about our triggers, is that they are clues for deeper healing. 

I’m sharing this with you because even though I experienced the anger and frustration, I was also able to hold space for those feelings without becoming them. As I held space for those feelings, I was able to identify the little girl part of me that was feeling unseen and I was able to give her exactly what she needed: validation, love and comfort. 

This process is called a triad. There is the protector, the part and the emotional need of the part. 

What sort of protectors do you utilize to guard your little girl or little boy that shows up when triggered? Do you avoid? Become a victim? People please? Control? Numb out? Manipulate? Project? Become addicted? Become hyperaware? 

What part of you is standing behind those protectors? The worrier? The anxious one? The one that doesn’t feel worthy? The one that feels unlovable? The one that feels abandoned? The one that feels unimportant? The one that doesn’t feel enough?

What is the emotional need of your part that is behind that protector? Is it appreciation? Love? Comfort? Validation? Safety? Community? Purpose? Belonging? Connection? Encouragement? 

Once we can start identifying our protectors, we can get more curious about our actions.

My protector of anger is there because with the first rupture when I felt unseen, anger served my emotional need of validation, comfort and love.

Think about it.. when I was a little girl I probably felt unseen in some situation… I acted out in anger and my mom or dad probably turned towards me and gave me what I was seeking… I got exactly what I needed.

I formed the unconscious memory that THIS action gets me THAT of which I am seeking.

What type of protectors/coping strategies do you use to get your needs met? Are they serving you?

How can you honor your protectors and hold space for them while simultaneously re-parenting yourself and giving the part of you that is showing up exactly what they need?

We are our own healers. 

I invite you to explore this this week and reach out if you want support. 

I see you. I love you.

Happy July!

Fitness

Happy Father’s Day!

From my family to yours, Happy Father’s Day! I hope this day is filled with rest, relaxation and a lot of snuggles and love from your kids. Speaking as a daughter, wife and mama, you are an integral part in our lives – thank you.

Enjoy your day in whatever way suits you!

Fitness

It’s Time to Breathe

Finding yourself easily triggered or overwhelmed these days?

Experiencing stress when it comes to managing your day-to-day tasks?

What if you could transform all of those emotions into energy that would serve you and your overall health in just 15-minutes?

The truth is you have the power to transform your emotions and energy in a matter of seconds, and it’s all with the use of your breath.

Want to learn how to utilize your breath to optimize your mental, emotional and physical health

Rest, Relax, Reset – Breathe to Embody is a 6-week series launching on June 28th. This program is designed to guide, support and educate you on identifying the power of your breath for stress management, overcoming anxiety and overwhelm, as well as honoring your emotions and reconnecting with your true self

Through weekly worksheets, breath work audio recordings and live guided breath work sessions, this program will empower you to use your breath so you can thrive.

Interested in learning more? Reach out and I’ll send you all the details!

Fitness, Health and Wellness, Nutrition

My Top Five Tips for Getting Back on Track

Ever find that after a busy season, holiday or family vacation you need to pull yourself back up onto the wagon to get back on track? Consider these five tips as a way to optimize your health!

  • Movement – 
    • USDA recommends people move their body for 150 minutes per week – this breaks down to 30 minutes, five days a week or ten minutes, 15 times. What I recommend is that you choose an activity that you enjoy to optimize the likelihood of consistency. 
    • When doing movement, stay within your aerobic heart rate zone! When we maintain our heart rate in our aerobic zone, we run our cells aerobically with oxygen, which is up to 16 times more energy efficient compared to our anaerobic heart rate zone. The goal is to stay in that energy-efficient, clean burning, oxygen-eating aerobic zone for the vast majority of time during exercise. Use thisinformation to calculate your aerobic heart rate zone.
    • Put movement on your schedule, ideally in the morning before anything gets in your way. Show up for your movement appointment as you would any therapy, dental, or chiropractic appointment.
    • Breaking the myth – you do not, I repeat, you do NOT need fancy, expensive equipment to get healthy and to move your body. All you need is yourself, and ideally proper footwear.
  • Nutrition – 
    • Minimize processed food – most processed food has harmful, toxic oils in it. The oils are considered TOXIC because they can not handle heat and when they are introduced to heat, they convert to trans fats. Trans fats lead to the formation of free radicals which not only turn normal polyunsaturated fatty acids into mutants, but can damage any part of your body: cell membranes, chromosomes, other fats etc.
    • Minimize refined sugar intake – most Americans are consuming, on average 200-pounds of sugar per year! Consuming refined sugar not only puts you at risk for diabetes, but it changes how your hormones work, significanly impacts your circulatory system, cholesterol, and can lead to birth defects among many other things. Refined sugar is just as addictive as cocaine. 
    • Eat clean – switch to organic to minimize your exposure to harmful pesticides and herbicides, all of which have been linked to cause certain birth defects, obesity, diabetes, ADHD and various forms of cancer. 
    • See food as energy – fuel your body with food in a way that will serve you, your health and your goals.
  • Sleep – 
    • Recommended amount of sleep per night is seven to nine hours. How much sleep do you need to thrive?
    • Minimize blue light at least two hours before bedtime – if this feels impossible, consider purchasing blue-light blocking glasses. Blue light blocks the release of melatonin, a natural hormone that makes us drowsy and promotes our sleep cycle.
    • Create an optimal sleep environment for YOU – what temperature does the room need to be? Does it need to be dark? What about white noise? Do you hate your sheets? Change them out!
    • Consistency when it comes to bedtime and wake up time – yes, even on the weekends. Figure out how many hours you need to thrive and adjust your bedtime and wake up time so you get just that. 
  • Fluid Intake – 
    • Standard recommendation is six to eight glasses of eight fluid ounces per day OR half your weight in fluid ounces. Consider splitting up the day into quarters and set consumption goals.
    • Consider drinking eight fluid ounces of luke warm, lemon water in the morning to assist with boosting metabolism and liver detoxification.
  • Stress Management – 
    • Stress is energy in the body – the three ways to move energy is through movement, sound or your breath. Considering moving your body, breathing it out or screaming it out to let it out. 

Every moment is an opportunity to get back on that wagon, to pursue your health and to choose something that will serve you. 

What will your next choice be?

Mindfulness, Mindset, Personal Development, Perspective, Self Awareness

June Newsletter

When you Accept What is…

Hear me out for a minute…

When the wind blows, we don’t try to change it; we accept it as it is. We don’t run up to the trees and attempt to hold them down because ultimately that wouldn’t work. The movement of the trees is a bi-product of the wind. When it rains, we don’t try to change it, stop it or alter it. Although some days we may not want it, we don’t push against the sky to make it stop, we simply accept it and adapt. 

What if we used this same concept with our emotions? What if when our emotions came up, we didn’t try to change them, suppress them, minimize them or ignore them, we simply accepted and adapted?

What if we accepted them for what they are: energy moving through us. 

What if we backed up, allowed space for our emotions so they could move through us instead of become us? 

My theory is that when emotions come up for us, it’s a clue. A clue that has the potential to lead us to deeper healing, understanding and awareness. 

What if you approached your emotions like you do the wind and the rain – accept them for what they are, shift to a vantage point of observation and adapt, as needed?

I invite you to honor any feelings that arise for you in the coming days, accept what is, while you stand firmly in your truth; stand firmly in the knowing that you are grounded, despite any emotion or feeling that moves through you. 

Something to consider: “I am the container for all of my emotions: I allow them in and I allow them out.”

Blood Sugar Balance, Fab Four Theory, Health and Wellness, Kelly LeVeque, Nutrition, Recipe, Smoothie

Strawberry Basil Smoothie

Ingredients:
1 serving vanilla protein powder
1 tbsp MCT oil
2 tbsp chia seeds
¼ cup diced frozen or fresh strawberries
Handful of spinach
Handful of basil
2 cups unsweetened almond milk

Place all the ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend to the desired consistency. If you use fresh strawberries, add a few ice cubes before blending to cool. If you’re not into strawberries, consider using blueberries, cherries or raspberries! If you’re not into MCT oil, consider an alternate healthy fat, such as 1/4 of an avocado.

This recipe is from Kelly LeVeque’s book, Body Love. A refreshing smoothie as the days warm up and summer approaches. Enjoy!

Fitness, Goals, Health and Wellness, Marathon, Marathon Training, Personal Development, Running

I completed my 11th FULL marathon!

I completed it on Sunday, May 2nd. I was scheduled to run the Northeast Kingdom Marathon on May 1st, but it was postponed until September. When they announced the postponement, I was faced with a decision: pause training and re-start when it’s within the 18-week window, OR keep training, map my own race and get it done. I decided to keep training. Much like all of us, I didn’t know what the restrictions of COVID-19 would look like in September and I wasn’t willing to push my plans again for COVID, so.. I didn’t.
 
What I want to say about this marathon, which really can be applied to any aspect of life is: if you have something on your heart, if you have a dream, goal or an intention, figure out a way to do it and just do it. We can always allow fear, doubt, uncertainty, weather, upset or anything get in our way, but when you can push everything aside and continue to pursue your dream while you simultaneously hold those feelings – man, what an amazing experience. You can hold fear and still maintain your forward momentum. You can hold any emotion and still obtain your dream. 
 
The night before the race, per usual, I was experiencing some pre-race jitters, uncertainty and questions of: “am I really going to achieve this?” “Why am I doing this to myself again?” This is nothing new. These thoughts, feelings and questions enter my mind every evening before a race. In this moment, I have two choices, I can allow the thoughts and questions to keep me up all night and ruminate, or I can allow them space to be there and continue moving forward with my plan. 
 
I mapped my route prior to the race. The route took me from Ferrisburg, through Charlotte and into Shelburne. Rolling hills with views of Camel’s Hump, the Adirondacks and Lake Champlain. It was breathtaking scenery that left me feeling grateful, humbled, at peace and calm. 
 
My husband, unbeknownst to me, set up a cheer squad to help me out along the way. Every time I approached loved ones, I got full body chills. Seeing them all jumping up and down, waving their hands and rooting me on from the sidelines was the exact boost I needed in that moment. 
 
In addition to training for 18 weeks, I prepared for this race by making a playlist and purchasing a book on audible. I also knew that if push came to shove, and I slipped into a negative mindset, I could dedicate each mile to someone in my life that I love and admire. As I write this, I find myself thinking and feeling like the time flew by… because honestly, it did. 
 
I spent the first hour adjusting my pace and getting comfortable in a stride that I could maintain. I spent the time embracing the beats of the music, soaking up the morning sun and holding gratitude for the scenery. 
 
During the second hour, I started to feel my left hip a bit but was also met by my loved ones. That love, excitement, and full-body chills allowed me to shift my focus back onto the road and my journey. 
 
It was during the third hour that the challenge set in as the wind was now against me. It was during this hour that I had a moment of breakdown. A moment of awareness on how different my life would be/could be if I made different choices. In this moment, I was overcome with compassion, love and pride for where I am in my life, for the people that I choose to have in my life and for how far I have come. There were tears, pride, happiness and then full-body chills again. 
 
The fourth hour was by far the hardest. I had just hit 20.5 miles and I still had 5.7 miles to go. It was an hour of on-going self-coaching, self-compassion, self-love, grit, determination and power. My legs felt like led, my left hip had come back to greet me, and I felt ready to accomplish my mission. But I wasn’t giving up. I wasn’t going to stop. I wasn’t going to walk. I was going to keep running, no matter how slow my pace became, and I did just that. 
 
I didn’t stop once. I ran the entire time and although my pace went from an 8:35 to a 9:53 minute per mile, there was no option for walking.  
 
I won first place! I say this with a smile knowing that I was the only runner out there, so I also came in last. Haha. 
 
Either way, I sit here at my desk with sore legs, a big smile and another massive accomplishment under my belt. 
 
We can do anything we set our minds to. I hope this story and marathon recap helps you feel empowered and allows you to hold the belief that you can do anything you set your mind to. 
 
Get after it, you’re worth it.