Hey Believers!

So you know that I’m all about fitness, strength and finding unique and powerful ways to achieve a healthy lifestyle. Well, I have found the perfect workout that compliments my jiu-jitsu training – Cardio Barre! As many of you know, I loved to dance growing up, so to combine elements of dance into a workout is so much fun and not to mention, a crazy, hard work out. I SWEAT guys, like I’ve never sweat before- it’s such an awesome buzz! It plays a huge role in my overall health regime so I wanted to take a moment to talk about it properly because I’m so passionate about the results and benefits it offers…

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Posted Under - Blog, Fitness, Health, Wellness Wednesday

BeliEVErs,

I know I wasn’t the only one who was totally inspired by the London 2012 Olympics- they were incredible! I love seeing the world come together to celebrate competition and sportsmanship, and seeing all the athletes represent their countries is truly phenomenal- that really is such an honor.

This year the female athletes, who all seemed to exude such passion and precision in their individual fields, particularly inspired me. Did you know that the US women bought home 65% of the US’s Gold Medals?! Go girls!!

Even though all the women athletes blew me away, there are a few in particular whose stories of hard work, passion and perseveration truly touched me.

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Posted Under - Blog, Featured, Fitness, Health, Wellness Wednesday



BeliEVErs,

After a good calorie-busting work out, it is SO important to hydrate!! All too frequently I see people reaching for these man made, artificial sports drinks that are actually loaded with sugar. The best sports drink, is a natural one…. Coconut Water!!

I swear by coconut water…. I love it! It’s super hydrating, all natural, and stacked with potassium and nutrients, so you’ll feel instantly hydrated… and it’s good for you! It is the perfect substitute for these expensive and artificial products. You’ll instantly feel refreshed after you’ve had a fill of this “miracle water.”… trust me!

Additional benefits are:
* Aids digestion
* Revitalizes cells
* Boosts metabolism

Here’s some to get you started:


BeliEVE

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Posted Under - Blog, Fitness, Health, Wellness Wednesday

BeliEVErs,

If you’re anything like me, then you loveee these summer months! The sunshine, the beach, and the BBQ’s! (Check out my Wellness Wednesday blog on how to combine BBQ’ing with healthy eating HERE)

We all love taking those coolin’ dips in the pool…but what’s great… is that the pool is also an awesome place to get a killer workout!

The pool might not be the first thing you think of when you’re looking to tone up… but what you probably didn’t know is that a pool workout can burn calories, boost your metabolism, and firms every muscle in your body!

On top of that, the added bonus of a pool workout is that it takes the pressure off your joints…. A welcomed relief if you do a lot of high impact workouts!

An easy swim burns around 500 calories an hour, whereas an intense session can zap almost 800!! And because water is nearly 800 times denser than air, each kick, movement, push, stretch and pull is like a mini resistance workout for your entire body—especially your core, hips, thighs, arms, shoulders, and hamstrings.

So essentially, not only are you blasting calories as you swim, but you’re developing and toning lean muscle, leading to a boost in your overall metabolism. This way you burn more calories once you’ve completed your workout and you’re going on about your day!

Here’s a helpful tip- to get the most out of your swim workout divide it into shorter segments. Mix a variety of work and rest intervals, and use different drills, strokes, and intensities!

Give it a go! Get to summer swimmin’

BeliEVE!

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Posted Under - Blog, Fitness, Health, Wellness Wednesday

BeliEVErs,

With summer in full effect the BBQ invites are rolling in… and if you’re anything like me, then you’re all about it!

BBQ’s with family and friends is one of my favorite things about summer … the fun, the games, and of course the delicious food!

The great thing about BBQ’s… is that it’s actually easy to eat healthy… if you make the right choices that is!

Grilling lean meats is one of the best ways for you to get an excellent source of protein! It’s so much better for you to grill your meat then it is to fry or sautee it, reason being, that any fat the food contains actually drips out during the grilling process, insuring that what you ingest contains limited amounts of fat. Add a salad, or grilled veggies as your side dish and you’ve got a BBQ’ed meal that’s healthy as well as delicious!

What healthy BBQ side dishes will you be having!? Leave me a comment and let me know… I’ll feature my fav’s right here on my website!

I actually grill all my meats and fish, even when I’m at home… and by investing in a small grill, you can too.

Here’s a good little grill to get you started!.



For the perfect summer desert, try making my Acai ice cream! I wrote a blog all about this a while ago, which you can check out here.

Get to grillin’ and enjoy your summer!

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Posted Under - Blog, Featured, Fitness, Health, Wellness Wednesday

BeliEVErs,

When it comes to eating right, there’s a simple rule of thumb that I stick to… “if it perishes quickly.. it’s better for me!”.

As simple as this sounds it’s a great and easy way to eat more of the foods that actually provide the body with the nutrition that it needs and eliminating the over processed, toxic foods that harm our bodies!

Fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, lean meats and proteins are what we want to be consuming a lot of… and we want to avoid pre-packaged, pre-prepared meals with preservatives. Even canned/ tinned fruits and vegetables are not as good for us as the open fruits in the produce section, as they contain preservatives that take away from the nutrients!

A while ago I wrote a blog about juicing- one of my favorite healthy snacks. If you missed it, check it out here!

Stock up on fresh fruits and veggies, invest in a juicer and a blender, and you’re good to go!

Here’s an awesome blender to get you started!



If you want to create your own juice (which I recommend), here’s a great juicer!


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Posted Under - Blog, Fitness, Health, Wellness Wednesday

BeliEVErs,

Without a doubt, an important component of my diet is protein! For those of you who are looking to slim down and tone up, keep reading to find out why it’s important and how you can increase your intake if you are not getting enough ☺

The amount of quality protein in your diet is an important dietary factor that impacts your metabolic rate and insures that you sustain lean muscle during weight loss. It’s also been proven to influence and support weight loss!

Protein should be consumed every day as it provides the body with roughly 10 -15 % of its dietary energy, and is crucial for cell growth and repair!

On top of all that, protein is also linked to improving muscle fitness and enhancing insulin and leptin function… which are all factors in supporting ideal weight management efforts over extended periods of time.

While the right amount of protein is important, you can have too much. Too much protein can cause digestive and health problems down the road, so make sure you always balance protein with healthy fruits or vegetables for every meal.

Here is a way to calculate your protein needs:

1. Weight in pounds divided by 2.2 = your weight in kg

2. Weight in kg x (0.8-1.8) gm/kg = desired grams of protein.

If you are in good health and don’t exercise or life weights heavily, use a lower number (0.8).

If you are under stress, are pregnant, or if you are involved in consistent and intense weight or endurance training, then use a higher number (between 1 and 1.8)

EXAMPLE: 150lbs/2.2 = 68kg x (1.2)gm/kg = 81 grams of protein per day.

So now you know WHY you need protein and HOW MUCH… and here’s how to get it!

The following foods contain high amounts of protein, try and incorporating them into your diet and see which your body responds to the best!

• Fish
• Chicken
• Turkey
• Egg Whites
• Beans & Lentils
• Tofu
• Nuts & Seeds

Another way to get the protein you need is to add a protein supplement to your diet. The best time to drink a protein shake is directly before or after your workout!

Here are some protein supplements that I’d recommend:



Protein Pudding! One of my favorite after workout snacks



And for you vegans out there…





Don’t forget… you need a shaker!



Be sure to combine this with a consistent workout plan & you’re good to go!

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Posted Under - Blog, Fitness, Health, Wellness Wednesday

BeliEVErs,

If I told you there was a magic potion that made all your dreams come true, would you take it? If I told you that with one sip of this magic potion daily, all your hopes, dreams and aspirations would manifest, would you take a sip daily?

Yeah? Thought so!

Okay, but what if I told you that instead of a magic potion, you had to whisper some magic words to yourself every morning, and that if you whispered these words, everything you’ve ever dreamt of would become a reality; would you make time every morning to say these words?

Yeah? I would too!

Okay, but what if instead of magic words, I told you that you had to believe, with unwavering faith, in yourself and in the fact that everything you want to have, be, and do, can be your reality. Would you do it?

That’s all it takes!

No, we can’t go back to the magic potion idea.

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Posted Under - Blog, Thought for the day, Wellness Wednesday

BeliEVErs,

In recent weeks I’ve been hearing more and more people tell me that they are adopting a gluten- free diet; something I personally try to stick to myself. While people argue about the pro’s and con’s of going gluten free, I personally have found that it has had a tremendous impact on my wellbeing and health!

Before I outline these for you, I know some of you are asking, what is gluten? Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, spelt, kamut, and oats. It is hidden in pizza, pasta, bread, wraps, rolls, and most processed foods. As you can see gluten is extremely common in many people’s diet!

So why go gluten free? Here are my 3 main reasons;

1) Gluten sensitivity/ intolerance – You would be amazed at the number of people who have gluten allergies/intolerances and don’t know it! A growing number of people are sensitive to gluten, and find that eliminating it from their diets solves many of their health issues, such as bloating, trouble digesting food, low energy levels, etc!
2) Weight control- gluten is an ingredient in a LOT of the bad processed foods we eat including pizza, pasta’s and cereals. Eliminating gluten from your diet inadvertently means eliminating all these bad foods!
3) Celiac disease- this is an autoimmune disease that is triggered by gluten. When a person with celiac disease eats gluten, their body attacks the lining of the small intestine which leads to malabsorption and a variety of symptoms. A lot of people don’t realize they suffer from this, and when they do realize and make the necessary changes to their diets all their health issues go away!

A lot of people find that after adopting a gluten free diet they have more energy, they don’t have that “stuffed” weighing-you-down feeling after they eat, and they find it easier to manage their weight!

Most grocery stores have a gluten free section!

Try these gluten free options to get started:

Give it a go- go gluten free!

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Posted Under - Blog, Fitness, Health, Wellness Wednesday

Being on the road 5 days out of the week means that sometimes it’s impossible for me to find a gym! Not having gym membership, or living too far away from a workout facility, is also more often than not one of the issues that people list as a reason for not adopting a consistent workout plan!

Good news is… you can get just as great a workout without having to use a single piece of equipment! All you need is your body, a bottle of water for hydration, and an awesome “lets kick butt” attitude!

Here are 5 highly effective exercises that you can do, without having to step foot into a gym!

Running:
Running is one of the best and easiest ways to shape and tone your body! It’s great for burning those calories, getting your heart rate up, and since you’re engaging all of the major muscle groups, it’s a perfect way to stay in shape when there’s no gym near! Add to that, running in the natural elements is a much more effective workout than running on a treadmill… where the treadmill is actually helping you run.

Stairs:
Walking, running, and hopping up stairs is one of my favorite workouts!! Check out my workout “Stairway to Heaven” here.

Squats & Lunges:
Tone those thighs & glutes with squats and lunges! Increase the intensity by doing jumping squats or jumping lunges!

Push-Ups:
A full body push-up is one of the best exercises that you can do! Increase the distance between your hands after each set, to tone all the muscles in your chest and arms! To get your heart rate up, try holding yourself at the lowest position for 15 seconds after each set. You can also use a chair to do reverse triceps push-ups.

Crunches:
Blast that belly fat with sit-ups and crunches! Be sure to pull your stomach muscles in throughout the exercise to fully engage you core. Make sure you target lower, upper, and your oblique (side) muscles by changing the position of your legs. All you need is a flat/ soft surface and you’re in business!

Stretching:
Don’t forget to stretch! Check out my wellness Wednesday blog to learn more about the importance of stretching here!

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Posted Under - Blog, Fitness, Health, Wellness Wednesday