Category Archives: Lifestyle

Adele’s 5 Friday Favorites

Back this week with 5 of my favorite things I am loving right now! But first, the holiday season.  I have my tree up and am in full Christmas spirit by practicing gratitude and am buying small but useful gifts for my friends and family this year because my motto in all areas of life is less is more.

In addition to simplicity, I have the concept of connection running through my mind lately and it 2016 my focus will be this. Simplicity and connection. I will be sure to write more in-depth about them soon. Ultimately I am on the path to clear all the mental and physical clutter in my life while building more purposeful and meaningful connections in my life. I can’t wait to dive into these concepts in a bit more depth.  Ok, Five Friday Favorites, here we go!!

Currently Wearing: Asics and Grandma’s bracelet.

Asics are my go-to shoe for being on my feet all day and instead of putting my grammy’s bracelet in the drawer, I decided to wear it every day. Why not?

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Currently Moving: Kettlbells

I have been adding Kettlebells back into my routine in small doses. Sometimes I feel like I forget about certain exercises so it is always fun when I remember them, like the windmill shown here. This is a fantastic exercise for shoulder stabilization, glute activation, stretches the waist and hamstrings, and strengthens the core all in a focused control movement.

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Currently Eating: Chocolate 

I halted my daily chocolate habit for a month, just to see if I could do it. I didn’t buy the chocolate and therefore did not eat the chocolate. I was proud of my mini self control challenge but am back at it. A piece a day keeps the sadness away. Or something like that. 😉

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Currently Thinking: Simplicity

It’s kind of the theme of my intentions right now, in my workouts, with food, organizing around the house. Less is more.

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Currently Loving: The Holiday Season

The Sunday after Thanksgiving is when I love to decorate each year because if I am going to put in all the work, I want to a have it up as long as possible. Before turkey day is too early and the week after December 1 is too late. I love the fresh pine as I walk in the house and the warmth and comfort of the lights at night. Plus it brings back lovely feelings of nostalgia.

 

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If you have any favorites you are loving right now, be sure to comment in the Facebook post. Aaaand, start thinking about what your theme will be in 2016 because I am going to be doing a whole series on how to create your theme (not resolution) in the new year!

what I learned from 3 challenges in November

The month of November provided to be a GSD (get shit done) kind of month. Without realizing it I committed myself to 3 completely different challenges that made me up my game in 3 completely different ways.

I did a 30-Day workout/shape up challenge, a 30-day blogging challenge to myself, and a #findthemoney challenge.

You always hear the criticism that perhaps because I overcommitted that I wasn’t really able excel at one, but I throughly enjoyed the mild pressure I put on myself to better myself in these 3 areas of life. And I think that is because I didn’t really stress about any of them. I practiced what I preach all the time and simply enjoyed the process. I will give you a a quick run down of each one.

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My new workout tank!

30-Day Workout Challenge

I did this for two reasons. I was feeling a little mindless with my eating and there is a prize of $1000. This challenge ends December 5th so I am just wrapping it up this week. And look, I don’t have weight to lose, not even my goal. But why not shoot for something that helps me feel a little more in control of my choices. THIS in itself is more important to me than the perfect body.

When I am eating out of boredom, mindlessness, and stress, I don’t feel good about myself. Honestly I don’t even know if the before and after pics will show anything different when I take the after this Saturday but I feel better regardless. I will be sure to blog more, post challenge with how I changed up my exercise and eating, and maybe even send the before and after pics to my email list.

#Findthemoney Project

I am always conscious about spending but this project by Danny J intrigued me, not so much as finding extra cash, but in not being as wasteful and frivolous with my choices. At the beginning I was required to total all my expenses for the week to see what I was spending and where.

I actually had done this, this past July and August on my own and knew that I was spending $600-$700 a month on food, just for me! In all fairness I often shop at Target for groceries so that total included paper towels, dog food and toothpaste here and there, but $700?

The suggestion was to spend $35 a week per person on food. I am a tall, active, hungry girl and I eat a lot so I didn’t stress trying to make this number but I knew for sure I could get it under $100 a week. So what did I do? 

First I stopped shopping at Target for groceries. Enough said. Next I tried to use up as much food in the house as possible each week and practically cleared out my freezer. I used my canned foods, foods I bypass in my cupboard every week and used all the spices and condiments I had instead of buying new ones.

I limited pricey products like Komboucha and Quest bars to just a few this month. At $3 a pop, I saved a ton. I spent less on convenience food, like pre made rice and pre chopped veggies. I sucked it up and did the extra cooking and chopping.

I also didn’t get any manicures or pedicures this month, which I normally get one of each minimum, and did my own. I didn’t really buy any clothes, books or household decor this month but when I did buy something I made sure I got rid of two other things. For example I bought a new workout tank (truly the last thing I need but oh well) and I got rid of two clothing items.

It really made me contemplate my purchases and I almost got a rush by NOT buying things because it meant extra money in my pocket. Perfect time for the holiday season with present buying and time off. I can estimate that I have $300 extra in my pocket this month! Perfect for some Christmas shopping.

Blogging Challenge

I set this challenge for myself. To post 30 blogs in the month of November. I think I hit 29. Normally I blog once a week and never really find myself ahead of the game but I noticed I had 5 blogs written, waiting to be posted so I thought why not? I write everyday anyways, I might as well write some more. It has actually been really fun for me because I have so many post-its, lists and notes on my phone about blog topic that I never was lost for an idea, I just had to put in the work and write it.

I made a public commitment on social media and in my coaching group to do this and it helped a ton because I put myself on the hook, which is exactly where I like to be.  Responsible for my choices. Which, as scary as it is, it pretty empowering at the same time.

What this month taught me.

I have felt very fulfilled and accomplished this past month and it got me thinking about happiness, joy and being content in life. A lot of these positive emotions are associated when we are working toward our full potential in any area of life.

You don’t need money or an extraordinary amount of time to better yourself in some way. You just need the desire and drive to make a change. The key to is to have a little compassion and patience with yourself and that is exactly why this month was so awesome for me. When I splurged on a certain, food, skipped a workout, bought a new shirt and missed one day of blogging, I didn’t beat myself up over it. I just moved forward. This is such a HUGE transformation from what projects use to look like for me with tons of pressure and criticism from myself and myself only.

If you ever have times where you feel a little lost, lonely or unsure of which direction you are headed, invest in yourself, in something. Taking action of some sort is one of the best ways to lessen misery. Yes, life can be difficult and we are all justified in our own struggles but we also have so much opportunity when we let go of the victim mindset that everything is happening to us.

Instead of feeling like the word owes you something, find something you owe the world and go do it. Even if that starts with bettering yourself by waking up every day and making the bed.  

Click here for a FREE Holiday Workout Challenge!

Adele’s Five Friday Favorites

I am starting a new, fun series called Adele’s Five Friday Favorites (AF) because I seriously have so much good information I don’t know what to do with it all.

I love to share all things health, fitness, and mindset and will be doing so every Friday with things I am loving right now. Here we go!

 

Adele’s Five Friday Favorites 

 

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I picked up this loose fitting alo tank the other day, on sale I might add, and am loving the sheerness, and the cutout on the back. I know it is not perfect for all locations of the country in late November, but for SoCal, it does just fine.

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This quote! Those who are most successful, in health and in life, are those who take the most consistent action each and every day, then sit back and let the universe supply the necessary time.  Sometimes we get caught up in the quick fix mentality and get frustrated when we put in all our effort for weeks, even months, and see minimal results. I get it. It doesn’t feel all that motivating. But it is hardest in the beginning and the more you can lean into the process and just stick with it, the steady and slow results will come. Getting impatient and giving up just makes the whole process take longer.

 

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I don’t come across a new favorite protein bar too often but these Oatmega bars are just that. They are made with grass-fed why, are gluten free, high in Omega – 3’s, high in fiber, low in sugar. The chocolate mint is my favorite and I am giving some away as a prize for my FREE workout challenge, 16to16. You can sign up here.

 

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I finished this book at the end of summer but find myself referring back to it quite often. “The obstacle in the path becomes the path. Never forget, within every obstacle is an opportunity to improve our condition.”   Our perception is everything when it comes to life, living and challenges. We decide it we will be weakened by challenges and obstacles or grow from them.


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Loving this SIP mug from Marshalls. In fact, I also picked up a Trick or Treat and Boo mug for Halloween and have my eye on the Jingle one I have seen floating around Instagram. No better way to start my day with a delicious helping of hot coffee with a little bit of cuteness to go along with it.

See you next week!

 

Why walking is the only cardio I do

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Walking helps me feel accomplished in my daily need to move, without overdoing it to my body.

About 5 years ago I did some online training with a coach who was a figure competitor. She gave me an outline of weight workouts for the month and I asked her what I should do for cardio as I noticed it was missing. I learned that cardio was simply not part of the protocol and when I expressed my concerns of blowing up like a balloon, she promised if I lifted intensely and watched my nutrition I would get the results I was seeking.

You see, at that time I was running 4-5 times a week for about 3 miles, either mixing it up with sprints or doing steady state. I was also dreading every minute of it. I was never motivated, it hurt my back and my hips, and it sent my appetite through the roof.

I put constant pressure on myself  to get 3 miles in for no particular reason except that 30 minutes was an acceptable minimum time to do cardio and I needed to burn more and more calories and get my heart rate up to breath hard. I was also lifting weights and trying to add some yoga in the mix. Still burning tons of calories, still not happy with my body, still a hungry girl.

Yet when this no cardio suggestion came about, I had a really difficult time accepting it. Long story short, with a little trust, I stopped the cardio and focused on weight lifting strictly for the few months I worked with her. Five years later I am stronger, happier, healthier, have more time, and have way better control of my appetite, still not making cardio a priority in my routine. I have since turned to walking my dog as the only consistent “cardio” with the exception of a few activities which I will further discuss. Here’s why.

It helps control appetite.

I was always hungry and I always felt under fueled. When I did eat more, I felt I would eat everything in sight. I craved salty treats, I craved sugary treats and I even when I was full, I never felt satisfied.

 From experience I know that exercising too much and for too long can potentially have more of an effect on appetite. Studies even show that walking is one of the few exercises that does not trigger some type compensatory cravings, such as long steady state cardio or progressive heavy weight lifting. These activities are not bad per say but if they leave you feeling ravenous with little self control it might be better to choose exercises that don’t impact your hunger, cravings and appetite as much.

You don’t have to recover from it.

When I was running everyday and adding super intense exercise in like CrossFit, I simply could not recover. I would hit it hard for a couple weeks and then take a couple weeks off. I couldn’t workout on back to back days, or even every other day, without feeling weak and exhausted. I would show up at my workouts within minimal strength, energy and motivation. Walking is added movement that does not hinder your current fitness routine.

It reduces stress levels.

One of the worst feeling I had with exercise was at a point in my life when I was extremely stressed and would start my workout with my heart thumping from anxiety and stress, as if I was in the middle of a CrossFit workout. I quickly learned this was not the time to bump, or encourage, extremely intense exercise from metabolic conditioning to sprints, etc.

High stress levels can have an affect on your relationship, your mood, your well-being and your appetite. In any case, finding ways to reduce stress is crucial to our health and walking is one great way to do it. It can almost be meditative in a sense, boost your mood, get you outside and be a great time to reflect and take in your surroundings. I always come back from my walks with a new idea, story or perspective. It is also a great activity to spend more quality time with your family. More resources here and here.

I don’t have to plan my meals around it.

Ever try doing cardio at an odd time like after work around 6:00, when you afternoon snack was yogurt at 3:30 and now you are trying to push yourself through a tough workout, starving for dinner but don’t want to eat to much to make you feel sluggish doing cardio. I use to stress out about this but with walking I can eat before or after and don’t have to worry about timing. In fact, it is kinda of nice to walk around after dinner instead of sitting on the couch.

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This is my dog Lulu and this is the opposite of how she looks on our daily walks.

Is walking really my only cardio or exercise I do?

My primary form of exercise is lifting weights (3-4 times a week at moderate intensity. I also add in yoga and/or pilates once a week.

For cardio, I walk my dog from 10-40 minutes most days of the week.

Occasionally if it is a brisk day and there is no incline on the road (yes that is a requirement) I sprint for a block because its kind of fun to see how excited my dog gets and it makes me feel like a little kid.

Once a month I hike or swim because I simply love moving outside.

A few times every couple weeks I will do kettlebell swings, mountain climbers, jump rope or some sort of plyometric for for 20-30 seconds, rest until I recover and repeat 5 times. Usually takes about 4-7 minutes depending on the day and exercises.

A few times a year I get on a piece of cardio equipment for 10 minutes and do similar intervals that I just mentioned.

The bottom line.

Do what works for you. I know many runners and cardio goers who love it,  but if it is not working or you absolutely dread it, or it leaves you in pain, don’t stick with it just because of the calorie burn or just because you are suppose too.

Walking fulfills my need for a daily physical accomplishment without overdoing it for my body. I like to move. I need to move. My body thanks me and I thank my body.

Click here for a FREE Holiday Workout Challenge!

yet another reason (ok reasons) to pick up heavier weights

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You don’t have to put on the big weights, simply start by challenging yourself more than you normally would.


Excited to announce that I am launching my 10 – Week Gym program Super Simple Super Sets  through Friday May 13th.  This program is designed with simplicity in mind, using supersets to progressively challenge the body, to maximize results over the course of 10 weeks, and beyond. Learn how to exercise smarter, get results, and stay sane.

Details and access here! 


You hear it all the time. Lift weights to lose weight. Lifting heavy will not make you bulky. It is not just for guys. Women can lift weights too.  Lift something heavier than your purse weighs.

And I bet sometimes you wonder why.  Does it really make a difference? Do I really need to lift weights? Do I really need to pick up something heavier?

You never have to do anything. I get that not everyone enjoys weight lifting, feels comfortable in that area, or is simply not into lifting at their maximum heaviest potential. Yet the benefits of weight lifting go beyond a certain type of look, fat loss, and simply being a workout.

Today I want to share with you a few you benefits you don’t always think about and why you might want to bump up the intensity in the gym and pick up a few more pounds, or ten, or fifty.

Improve your insulin sensitivity.

Insulin is a hormone released by the pancreas and when we eat a meal, for example, it responds by increasing blood sugar levels. It shuttles glucose (carbohydrates/sugar) from our bloodstream into our cells and is likely to be stored as fat if our liver and muscle supplies are full. It often is referred to as the storage hormone.

At optimal levels insulin has important functions but when it stays constantly high we run into trouble. It simple terms too much insulin release can lead too much storage in body fat which is seen by eating way too much and moving way too little .

In other words you want high insulin sensitivity and this is accomplished by having more muscle mass and doing activities that promote more muscle mass, aka strength training. When you lift weight you increase you insulin sensitivity and that is why it is recommended to eat close to post workout because you food will be shuttled to replace glycogen in your muscles first and not be as likely to be stored.

What we were meant to do.

Weight training mimics what we were meant to do. Labor. As humans, physical labor is part of what we have always done. Until the industrial and technical revolution slowly came in to play and we began to move less and less over time and rely on other people and things to do our work. From cars, to garage door openers, to tv remotes, to washing machines and jobs that require us to sit most of the day.

We need to labor, we just don’t in our everyday lives anymore so we need to create bouts of intense physical labor regularly. Not just a moderate jog on the treadmill or picking up 5 lb dumbbells. Use weight that feels challenging and makes you want to put it down.

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If you finish an exercise and think you could have done 5 more reps, select one weight heavier next time.

Keep your metabolism humming. I’m not just saying that ….

When we go through steady state cardio it can potentially strip our muscles and raise our cortisol levels, aka stress hormone. That is the last thing we need right? Chronic stress on our body after chronic stress in everyday life. Bouts of raised cortisol are normal and have their place but the more you keep stress high and do things that wear on your muscle mass, the less place you will have for storage of carbohydrates and the more likely it will get stored as fat.

Again find activities that promote muscle mass and keep your metabolism high. In article by  Alwyn Cosgrove The Heiarchy of Fat Loss he discusses how to maximize leanness with time being a limited factor and said that the best activity was this.

“It’s fairly obvious that the build of calories burned are determined by our resting metabolic rate or RMR. The amount of calories burned outside or our resting metabolic metabolism (through exercise and the thermic effect of feeding) is a smaller contribute to overall calories burned per day.

We can also accept that RMR is largely a function of how much muscle you have on your body – and how hard it works. Therefore, adding activities that promote or maintain muscle mass will make that muscle mass work harder and elevate the metabolic rate.”

To be stronger everyday.

There is nothing I enjoy hearing more than a client of mine who is a grandma and was able to get up and down on the floor to play with her grandkids. Or a 75 year old client who felt she could climb every step on her European vacation. Or the new mom who felt stronger and more balanced when carrying around her baby. Or my own personal experience of carrying in 10 grocery bags at once or picking up my own heavy stuff and when a guy offers to help I just respond, “No thanks, I got this.”

Strength is life. Healthiness is life. And the more we can contribute to being independent and doing activities we enjoy or need to do, the happier we will be. If you want to see change you must challenge yourself physically and mentally.

You can do hard things.

Physical strength translates into emotional and mental strength. You can do hard things. You can overcome the unthinkable. You can push yourself to do more than you think you are capable of.

Physical strength translates to emotional strength and the cycle continues to feed itself. You get stronger, become your confident, get even stronger and have even more confidence. And now because you have more confidence you push yourself more in your workouts, and build confidence again. The cycle continues and has a ripple effect in other areas of your life. Grab a heavier weight. Challenge yourself. Work exceptionally hard.

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Additional Readings:

Precision Nutrition: All About Insulin

The Heiarchy of Fat Loss  

Strengthen your mental energy to make healthier choices?


I sent a blog out to my email list a couple weeks ago but when I get so much feedback I felt the need to share it with you as well.

We get really good at the “how-to’s” with food, fitness and health but not so good about what gets in the way. One area we often overlook is conserving willpower and the importance of how that affects our choices.  Because when willpower is drained, which it will be by the end of your day, it will be tougher and tougher to make good decisions that are in line with your goals. And what is one thing I let drain my willpower? Social media pursuing.

Though I tell myself I am checking it to relax and zone out for a few minutes, checking it constantly during the day just keeps my mind racing, keeps me in the comparison trap and never really just lets my mind completely relax. There are lots of other things that drain our willpower too. Work, projects, meetings, kids, zoning out for hours watching t.v. and yes the hundreds of food choices we make each day.

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The real secret of willpower is to learn how to conserve it rather than use it.

You see willpower is a finite source of energy. In other words it drains like your cellphone battery. By the end of the day when your willpower is shot, your stress is high and your energy source is low you will be more susceptible to skipping your workouts, snacking mindlessly and making poor food choices.

I find myself saying, “I won’t snack.” “Don’t eat.” “ Just stop it.”  “Just go workout, stop thinking about it.” And here is where we get it wrong. Telling ourselves over and over NOT to do something. Because when we continually exhibit self control and discipline it drains our energy stores.

Most likely we are not building in willpower relief through the day. We are not taking downtime, relaxation time, and it shows up in other areas of life and makes us anxious and overwhelmed and drains our focus and productivity. When your willpower is exhausted it affects your choices.

That is just what I have been doing lately. Because I have been letting stress and overwhelm get the best of me. I know how to conserve willpower, I just haven’t been doing it. Sound familiar?

Today I am going to talk about how we can conserve willpower and make better choices in regards to our health. Remember it IS a practice. If you want to get better at healthy eating, you must practice making better choices. You may not always win, but practice makes progress. Just like in a sport or new skill.

Here is what I am doing to strengthen my willpower. Because the answer lies more in conserving willpower than constantly trying to resist food, snacking and checking social media. Have you ever thought about it that way?

Strengthen your mental energy to make better health choices? Here are 4 ways to help you make healthier choices.

Priming. This idea is used when you use a positive behavior to prepare for a certain situation or challenge that you face that may be tempting. When I am tempted by snacking/checking social media/wanting to skip my workout, I will do ______ instead. The other day I was actually mid snack, not even hungry and just said “Adele, stop it. Go for a walk.” So put my peanut butter jar back in the fridge and went for a walk. I saved myself mid way through and that is better than not saving myself at all. I know for me, going for a walk is one of the ways I “prime” myself for success. It could be anything. You could call a friend, take a few deep breaths, go workout. Figure out how you will prime.

Month/week/day at a glance relaxation routine.

I focus on what I can do each month, week or day to add relaxation into my routine.

In a month I try to pick a “big” thing. A big thing to me would be a massage or a trip or day out where I completely remove myself from my work and focus on relaxation and in turn restoring willpower.

I choose 2 moderate things a week, like a walk, foam rolling or yoga session or taking a hot bath.

And I choose 3 teeny moments a day where I can take a break from my work. Maybe walk for 5 minutes, meditate for 2 minutes, take a nap, read a non business book, or watch a funny show. (Tv is shown to help relax for no more than 30 minutes. Because then it begins to feel like zoning out and escaping. And escaping is not the same as relaxing).

Block time

Introduce block time into your schedule. Create your work block time during the day, whether that is for projects, bills, chores, etc. Then set aside time to check social media, email, whatever it is that you want to use it for. Have your phone out for phone calls and texts but only check your major distractors once in the morning and once at night. Are we really missing out if we don’t check Instagram all day. No. But I know I still do it.

Think about food ahead of time.

Thinking about food too much in my early 20’s did provide me with a great tool I still use to this day. I always think about what I am going to have at my next meal or my day ahead. Not in an obsessive way, more so in a preparation kinda way. When do I usually eat, where am I going and what will I have?  This will help you make your decision ahead of time and save some of that willpower. If you pack your lunch for work, even better.

Learn how to take some of the load off yourself in the moment when it comes to eating. I already know what I will eat for dinner tonight and probably breakfast tomorrow. If I go to a restaurant I almost always scan the menu online before hand. It helps me stay out of the mental battle with food cycle. Less decisions with more automatic positive behaviors are what lead to change. Not restricting your diet, not running yourself into the ground, not the new detox.

The takeaway? Instead of constantly focusing on what does not get done or where you mess up, try planning for where you might go wrong. Be aware of energy zappers (too much social media, t.v., stress and overcommitment’s) and focus on how to add more relaxation, calm, and better choices in your routine.

how to be consistent when results are invisible

Consistency is a complete game changer if you are seeking a healthier body and lasting change. Most plans will work, if you can stick to them with them. When you use the consistency method though, the results are often invisible to begin with. The little things done each and every day seem boring and insignificant and like they won’t add up. All too often plans are quit before results ever show up.

Being consistent does not fee as sexy or interesting to say that you do Paleo, gluten free or that you juice green smoothies every day.  It feels kind of lack luster to simply respond with “I eat consistent.” We tend to value novelty and choose the next best thing over good common sense. We want something that gives us rules so we can be compliant and feel good about our commitments. We want results and we want them now.

I understand because I have been there too. Thinking that if I eat well for a few days my ultimate goal will show up. That if I have a couple good workouts I will reach my strength goals or if I stretch every day for a week my flexibility will improve dramatically. Each time I quit too soon I feed my belief that it is impossible to make change with small daily efforts.  

You will be more successful if you understand that the little things you do each and everyday matter and will add up if you wait it out long enough for the outcome to show up. Then keep at it.

Is the answer really to be dieting and struggling and wasting mental and physical energy for the rest of our lives?  Is food either a strict plan to be followed with compliancy and discipline or a free for all of eating entire pizzas. Are workouts to be done with dread?

The answer likes in finding the dreaded middle ground of balance and moderation. Of acknowledging where you are truly messing up. Of giving up excuses that the little things don’t work when you have not even put in the effort to know. When I talk talk about my C3 formula for change I use being conscious, compassionate, and, you guessed it, consistent to find your own way. Here is what I hash out with my coaching clients.

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Putting in little efforts everything day and repeating them over and over again, is the answer.

How to be more consistent?

 

Be committed to the process, not the end goal. You have to acknowledge that the reason you are not making progress is because you are not staying consistent. You are not committed to the process day in, day out and focusing on doing the little things to get you to where you want to be. You have to be committed to the process even when you don’t see results. It’s like saving money. If you want to save “x” of dollars, it doesn’t happen right away but with little contributions over time it will.

Practice changing one habit at a time. It is so tempting to want to change everything all at once, but that is exactly what keeps us struggling. Instead, focus on getting really good at one thing before moving on to the next. Where do you start? What is your number one struggle? Focus on changing one big thing that will have a significant impact on your results. Over night snacking, poor lunch choices, lack of activity. Pick one thing and do it well.

Do not deprive or restrict yourself. So often I see people deprive themselves from the foods they love only to fall off the wagon. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BE PERFECT TO GET RESULTS. Just consistent.

Focus on things that matter. Creamer in your coffee or choosing a banana over an apple or a piece of bread here and there are not going to make or break you. Choosing whole pizzas, fast food, and a bottle of wine every single night, might. Focus on the big things that will make a difference. Getting more water in. Having a balance of protein, carbs and veggies at all your meals. Working out a few times a week.

Eat foods you enjoy. Eat delicious food that you enjoy. Because when you do you are so satisfied other foods don’t tempt you. When you are not emotionally satisfied with your food your cravings will be higher. When you are not physically satisfied with your food, you will be craving more.  If you do not look forward to what you eat, you are not doing it right and you will not be consistent.

You might love cookies, pizza, pop tarts and nachos but I bet there are healthier foods that you enjoy too! So make a list right now of food you love. See what you come up with and go from there. Then make a list of foods you despise, and don’t eat them.

Focus on a day at a time. Don’t stress about next week or next month or family vacation. Take it day to day.  If you find you are feeling overwhelmed then you are probably focusing on too much. Take it meal to meal. If you are still overwhelmed take it moment to moment. Ask yourself what can you do well in this very moment. Embrace the process and learn to shift your focus to what you can have, not what you can’t have. This wears on your willpower and makes you think about what you can’t have even more.

When consistency is going well you can worry less about extreme workouts and perfection with your eating. But you have to sustain motivation to keep you going and you have to have a clear vision in front of you and believe deeply that you can set out what you are about to achieve. It is hard to envision living this in the long run but you will NEVER get there if you are not consistent.

Consistency  is what you apply for 30, 60 ,90 days and beyond. Even when you are not seeing immediate results. Even when you feel like you fall off track.  Even when you feel lost and don’t know where to turn. It matters less about what specific plan you follow and more that you actually consistent with it.

Click Here to get Free Super Simple Tips to Your Ideal Body

3 huge mistakes almost everyone makes when trying to change their body


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There is one major problem with the amount of health, diet, food, and fitness information out there. It is not working. Long term. Ironically conventional wisdom, common advice, and diets are keeping you struggling.  


If it were as simple as following a meal plan and exercising more, no one would be seeking advice. You can google 7 day meal plan right now, have the answers to what to eat and be well on your way to success. 

I get it. We all do it.

I personally bought my clean eating cookbook in 2006. Made my steamed brown rice, vegetables and chicken, and measured and ate the recommended portions down to the ounce. Packed my meals for out the day. Would go, go, go, and eat at the recommended times even though I wasn’t hungry or maybe craving something else. 

I would reluctantly walk through the door after a long day of work, lace up tennis shoes and miserably do a 3 mile run.

I be starving after my bland dinner and have just a few bites of leftovers. And then a spoonful of peanut butter. Then I wasn’t really hungry but would have a few grapes and maybe a cup of yogurt and that cookie too.

Then I would go to bed stuffed and sad and wake up and get back to my restriction the next day because that was THE day I would change be compliant.  Even worse I fed into my own belief that this was the only way to be successful. And I kept doing it.

I had become lazy and dependent, only knowing how to eat if it was what my plan said and only focused on burning calories in my workouts.

When everything changed.

About 5 years ago I had a huge transformation (mostly mentally and emotionally) when I learned how to stop making these mistakes I am about to share with you.

There is a big disconnect with health and well being and the way we think. For me personally, when I was fighting healthy choices, and trying to control them, it only seems to turn around and control me back. It not only prevented me from living in my right body, but it prevented me from living my right life.

Have you ever felt that way?

Today I am setting the record straight so you can stop making these mistakes and start focusing on the things that actually matter and will ACTUALLY produce results.

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Mistake #1 Relying too much on willpower and motivation.

There is actually research on willpower. Research that say we should stop using it as a tool for our self control

“If I just had more willpower and discipline I would do better,” I hear my clients say.

And I get it. We think willpower is an end all, be all choice, and if we are restrictive enough and just turn our back to things we want to resist, we will be successful. Did you know that willpower is not an endless source of energy and the more you rely on it, the harder it is to make the good decisions you intend to make?

Think of it like your cell phone battery. At the beginning of the day it starts strong and the more you use it, the more it drains. By the time you are home it is at 19%, barely holding on and now you have to make dinner and workout on energy that is barely holding on. No wonder it is healthy eating in the evening that people find most difficult.

The more strict and compliant you try to be, the more likely you will drain your willpower energy source and continue to struggle. Then we turn to motivation. The trouble with motivation is that is comes and goes. Those who are most successful do the work whether they are motivated or not. 

The key is to learn how to conserve your willpower, not rely on it. And to not rely on motivation, create it, even if that means showing up even when you don’t want to.

By creating positive habits and rituals in life you can learn how to make healthier decisions that are as automatic as brushing your teeth. The brain likes effortless whether those habits serve you or not.

Mistake # 2 Trying to burn more calories and eat less calories instead of building muscle and eat smarter.

 

Conventional wisdom says if we just eat less and less calories and exercise to burn more and more calories, the results will come. That is true to some extent except we have been conditioned to take it to extremes. Extremes that fail us over and over again. Though it has been conventional wisdom in the past we seriously need to reconsider this framework if sustainable  (and healthy) body transformation is the goal.

For me personally, I could care less if someones heart rate monitor says they burned 1,000 calories in a hike or 777 calories in a workout class.  Calories burned are not the concern. I care that you are creating a strong, functional body and not screwing up your metabolism.

I care that you go home and eat a dinner that is healthy, satisfying and does not erase all your hard work.

Here is the thing with doing too much cardio and drastically reducing your calories. Your body adapts. You drop your calories, your body adapts. You do more cardio, your body adapts. You stop seeing results, you eat less. At some point you can’t do more exercise or reduce your calories.

When you are doing excessive cardio you burn through your carb and fat stores, strip your muscles, raise your cortisol levels, and in turn slow your metabolism and stress your body. Your body responds by making it easier for you to store fat for your next long workout expenditure. With a low calorie intake at the same time you body freaks out because it starts to miss out on key nutrients and is not sure if it will have enough energy to survive. It leans toward more fat storing.

When you overindulge, which you will at some point because it is life and you can’t sustain restriction, your calories above that baseline metabolism that you now have created for yourself will be more likely to go to your fat stores.

What is the answer? Exercise smarter and move more. Eat enough to fuel your activity expenditure.

Keep your body strong and functional and your metabolism revving by lifting weights. Eat enough to fuel your body in return. We were meant to work in shorter more intense activities. We were meant to walk, to garden, to labor, to build, to climb, to play, to move. 

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Huge mistake #3 Justifying your commitment to health

 

It is human nature to excuse, blame and validate our own feelings and thoughts to make ourselves feel better. We like to give away our healthy choice power even when the cost is our health. It makes us feel better if responsibility is not on us because it helps minimize our own pain. I get it. We all do it.

It is my friends birthday so I had to have cake.

I worked out so I deserved to eat a huge meal.

I had to eat that pizza because I didn’t want it to go to waste.

Here is a concept for you to try. Starting taking responsibility. For everything. In your relationships, in your job, in your daily routine and with your health! Even if you think it is someone else fault or there is a reason getting in the way, taking responsibility helps you find  solutions and you solve problems.

When you start to do this, you realize how much power, choice and opportunity you do have! Face you truth right now!

Our bodies DO NOT define our self worth but they do house these amazing souls that contribute to the world each and every day and I believe that health, wellness and fitness is a catalyst to so much more.

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When you start feeling better mentally and physically, other areas of life start changing as well. You may feel better, eat better, stress less, spend less, relax more, contribute more, help more. A simple transformation in your health can trigger changes in other parts of you life too and have a ripple effect beyond what you think you are capable of. 

I teach all this and more to my email list. How to exercise smarter, make better decisions with food and create sustainable and sane change. For more insights on a weekly basis and to snag your free cardio guide on how to shorten your cardio sessions but still get results snag your spot here: http://bit.ly/sscardioguide

How to cultivate a loving perspective with your body

If you are like me, this health and fitness stuff is all good and well but ultimately you just want to move in a way that feels good to your body, eat food you don’t stress over, spend time with people you care about and live your life doing more of the things you want to do and less of the things you do not. This is the reality I have cultivated over the years. But it didn’t always feel this way.

When done right, I truly believe your health and fitness are a catalyst for these things and I am not talking about a certain degree of leanness. I am talking about being able to do the things you want to do and not letting the health of your body or your own irrational fears hold you back.

Because it’s not about changing your body, it is about changing your mindset first and foremost and here is exactly how you can begin to do that.

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My motto. Move often. Eat Simply. Live Freely.

Move Often. Ask yourself how you love to move and go do it!

Growing up in an active family sports were never really about “exercise.” They were about being active, healthily, and doing something as a unit, whether that was a team I was on or doing something with the family.

But trying to find movement fun in adulthood? I lost that for awhile.

I had a huge mindset shift a few years ago after experiencing, what I call, my 365 days of back pain. After finally healing, I developed bundles of gratitude simply for my body and what it does. I realized that exercise was about not doing more, but being more efficient in my workouts, in shorter amounts of time and including movement I truly enjoy and that feels good for my body.

But it all started with changing your mindset around movement. It is something that should enhance our lives not take away from it, and it is something we get to do!

How to move and improve your body. If you find you have this negative association with working out or being active I want you to make a list of all the things about why you feel it is negative.

It is too hard. It is something you have to do.

You have had a long day at work.

You don’t know what to do.

You have no one to move with.

Then replace each sentence with a positive outlook. It does not have to be hard. I get to do it. I can go for a walk. Moving makes my body feel good. Repeat your positive outlook over and over until you believe it.

Eat Simply. Oh food, how we spend so much time stressing and criticizing you, while indulging and spending time with you.

Here is the deal. We have to face food every day. The thing is, it does not have to be complicated and we should spend more time enjoying it, then stress or over OR under indulging with it.

So instead of viewing food as this dreaded thing or this excuse that you love food so much and that is why you eat, view food as information for your body.

Pay attention to:

How food makes you feel.

What triggers you to eat and why.

What you do in social settings?

What you enjoy and actually like. And what you don’t enjoy.

Take all this information your body gives you and learn from it.

Does eating fast food make you feel bloated? Do you eat everything on your plate no matter what? Practice leaving a few bites. Is wine something you enjoy? Well, please don’t get rid of it altogether.

The more you deprive yourself the more likely you are to indulge. So instead of this constant battle of restricting and then binging why not try eating mostly healthy and build in a few indulgences throughout the week so you don’t feel the need to overindulge or proclaim anything off limits.

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How to eat simply ( with less complication & overwhelm).

For starters, spend less time and energy restricting and more time putting things into action.

Use, what I like to call, sabotage prevention foods. Food that prevent your own self sabotage.

 Ask yourself. What are two things you love to include in your diet? Wine, cookies, peanut butter, a steak, bacon, a banana? Make sure you have a small portion a couple times a week.

Adding these foods in, in small amounts can actually work to prevent you from your own self sabotage, restricting for weeks and then indulging for days. Why?

Because you have been including these things in your diet so there is no need to overindulge and claim it as a cheat meal. This week, try to make your focus eating healthy and strategically place these things in your diet. While at first it can seem like a little bit of work, it will eventually become effortless, and that is the goals right? To make eating feel a little more effortless and a lot less stressful.

Live Freely. It sounds so simple but all we really want to do is just be happy right?  Feel freedom in our lives, comfort in our own skin, and free from stress and negativity.

Here’s the thing. Struggle will always be a part of life and the more we can accept it as that, the less we will have to fight it.

One of my favorite quotes on happiness is by positive psychologist Shawn Achor.

“Happiness is the joy we feel working toward our full potential.”

Happiness is not an arrival or a claim that our lives are perfect all the time. Happiness is a journey and process of growth and as long as we are growing, we are thriving in a sense. In our relationships, in jobs and careers, and in our health.

Being stagnant sends us straight on the path to misery. And maybe not in the moment but eventually if you look back and you are exactly where you were 10 years ago in any area of your life, you may find yourself desiring more. The good news is that it is never to late. You can start right this very minute.

Be a happiness hunter?

Do something. Growth does not have to be this huge concept and is not achieved in one day. Or is it? The beauty of growth is that we can do little, tiny things each and every day to contribute to our well being and personal development.

Learn a new skill.

Read a personal development book and start your day with a fresh perspective.

Try a new exercise in the gym. Add some weight.

Learn a new recipe.

By practicing, learning, and opening up yourself to growth in smaller areas of your life, it will translate to bigger areas in your life.

Practice gratitude. I will leave you with this. The trouble with gratitude is, it works. In any given situation, if you can shine some light and appreciation on where you are and what you have in your life, you are well on your way to living a happier life.  Because there is always beauty and opportunity in each and every day, challenges, and obstacles we face.

Is self love keeping you unhealthy?

For years all I wanted  was for someone to tell me, “Adele your body is ok exactly the way it is.” I think in my quest for the perfect body, I was seeking some sort of outward acceptance that I was ok. Ironically I did have it from friends and family, without even asking for it. But they were suppose to tell me that I am ok just the way I am. So it didn’t count, right?

And as long as I was killing myself in the gym and restricting my food in the kitchen, I was good. Because I was working towards a better me (so I thought) the only way I knew how to do it. And if I had that body that others could love, I too could love myself.

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I couldn’t be content because being content somehow indicated that I wasn’t doing enough. Somehow loving myself meant that I didn’t want to get better improve or grow and that I was just satisfied with what I had and wouldn’t be motivated to try anymore.

What I have learned over the years is it is possible to love yourself and get better at the same time. You don’t have to hate your way to success and self love does not indicate giving up.

But what about when it does?

With the self love phenomena exploding, to love your self in any shape or size, my heart is happy. But too often I see people using this concept of self love without one crucial component. Responsibility. And I get it. Because I use to feel that loving myself and accepting myself meant leaving responsibility behind. But it doesn’t. It means taking MORE responsibility in your life and your choices.

And I’m talking crazy responsibility. 

I see self acceptance being used in form of excuses and as justification that because we are good enough right where we are, we don’t need to work to improve. And while I believe in this moment we are perfect exactly where we are, and as we are, I also believe that is not an excuse to not grow, improve or get better, in this case with our health.

Because accepting yourself in your current state does not have to be the same as resignation, giving up, or not working towards where you want to be. Loving your curves does not mean you can’t strive to be healthy. Loving what is given to you does not mean that you can’t make good food choices. And loving yourself doesn’t mean your journey ends here. You just do your best and try not to be attached to the outcome.

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Self love is not an excuse for why you can’t do more. And there is actually a place for this perspective.

It’s called active acceptance.

Active acceptance says that you don’t have to hate yourself to reach your goals. It says that you don’t have to give up either. You can improve, grow, learn and get better while loving and appreciating your body and everything it does for you.Because the idea that you can only love yourself or be happy when you reach a certain point is insane. You can and should love yourself right in this very moment, no matter what.

It is possible to be content and at peace with your body but not satisfied. Because a healthy body is not an ultimate goal. It is not like running a marathon. You don’t get to cross the line and get to be done. You have to constantly work at it, for life.

And by taking responsibility, we GET to create a journey of health and well being. We may not always have control and we will most definitely go with the ebb and flow of life and be in phases of working out more or less, our appetite will change, our bodies will change, days with change, goals will change and that is all ok.

Just don’t give up your power.

Often we blame, judge and excuse what we do.  We fight with the reality of our situation and claim we have no control over it. And I get it, I’ve done it before. But guess what? It takes away our power to cultivate healthier habits and make progress and puts the work out of our hands.

Its just the way I am.

My body will never change.

It’s too hard.

I have tried it before.

Telling yourself this story keeps you caught in this story. And any story where we limit ourselves is detrimental to our emotional and physical health. The beauty is we can change our story!

Yes, we can change our story!

I have potential.

I can love myself and still want to make change.

It can be hard.

It is a journey that I am embracing.

Somethings are in our control and something our not, but our responsibility lies in our efforts, not the outcomes.

Stressing over macro nutrients and calories. Avoiding favorite foods. Exercising yourself into the ground. This isn’t healthy.But neither is skipping exercise or movement. Neither is making poor choices just because we give into accepting our health or current condition the way it is.

Accept your body right now as it is, in it’s shape and size and self perceived imperfections, but nurture it, take care of it and appreciate it for what it does. Love your body but don’t let your love be an excuse to not take care of it.

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