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Posts tagged ‘live well’

The mountain and me

Six years, countless climbs. Still conquering the mountain & me!

It started on this mountain in the depth of winter a little over six years ago. This is where I dug deep and found myself – my strength, my determination, my resolve, and my desire for a better life.

This is where I officially decided that I wanted more out of life than being obese and living small. This is where I decided I wanted it all. And most importantly, I decided — YES, indeed, I could do it!

It was December 2010 when I first met Oberg – a little mountain on Minnesota’s North Shore of Lake Superior. I weighed upwards of 360 lbs (down 20 from my all-time high). I was on day two of weight-loss boot camp when they told me we were going to climb a mountain…in snowshoes.

I was pissed, scared, and a bit defiant when it came time to suit up in our snow gear. Fear took over as I contemplated my first mountain climb ever. I stood there and allowed Jeremy, the young activities director, to strap on my snowshoes because it was too hard for me to bend over and I had no idea how to assemble those contraptions to my feet.

How time flies and circumstances change!

Today, March 18, 2017, I find myself back at the foot of Oberg Mountain Loop strapping on trackers over my hiking shoes. I am alone. I am -200 lbs lighter in load. I am strong, confident, resilient and beautiful. And this time, I am oh so grateful for the trip up what I now refer to as “my mountain.”

I KNOW this mountain. I know me. And I know that I will find exactly what I need today as I make my way up the deceivingly steady incline at the start of the trail, on the switchbacks, and as I make my way around the hilly 2.2 mile loop with breathtaking views. Read more

Hiking under the Arizona sun

You almost LOST ME at rattle snakes, scorpions & tarantulas!

Last week I got to spend some quality vacation time with family and friends under the warm Arizona sun. I’m an ocean-loving girl, so it’s been more than nine years since I’d been to Arizona.

The last time I visited, I was at my all-time heaviest weight of 381 lbs and it was a very different trip. Needless to say, I was more of a passive observer of the Arizona mountains on that trip. I had trouble walking even short distances and couldn’t imagine actually getting out in the wilderness and hiking.

But this year, as a fit and healthy girl, it was important to me to get out in the dessert and experience it up close and personal via my favorite outdoor activity — hiking the mountains. At least that was my plan UNTIL I learned that rattle snakes and tarantulas frequent the trails! Eeek. Literally, my worst nightmare and one of my biggest fears. That said, my desire to hike was greater than my fear of reptiles and creepy crawly things (barely). So, off we went.

We had a host of hiking recommendations in the Superstition Mountain Wilderness — including the Siphon Draw Trail and Flatiron. But, after hearing my 20-something niece and nephew describe the difficulty of these hikes, we decided our inaugural dessert hiking trip would start with something simpler — the three mile round trip Hieroglyphic Trail near Gold Canyon. Read more

Getting back in the zone

Are you still “In Your Equation” or do you need a restart? Let’s get it!

Okay, anyone feel like they “lost it” in terms of living healthy in January? Be honest.

Not only did January speed right by, but so many people I’ve talked to recently are struggling with sickness, depression and/or the winter blues, and are feeling “off their game” already in 2017. If you’re in this camp, trust me, you’re not alone.

It’s common to start strong and be in your healthy zone — where you’re feeling great and you have the motivation mojo — only to have life throw a curve ball that gets you a bit off track, if not totally out of the zone. I’m feeling it, too.

An early January vacation to Cozumel (which was totally awesome) threw me a bit off my healthy routine at the start of the year. Then I came home and promptly got that awful bronchial crud (there are some nasty cold/flu viruses going around), followed by a case of the post-inauguration blues. Before I knew it, January was gone and I had slipped out of my healthy zone.

Whatever the reason, if you’re feeling a bit “off” or having trouble getting your mojo back, this blog is for you — and me. It’s time to stop making excuses, stop beating yourself up and RESTART. Get ready to go 100% ALL-IN, cause here we go! Read more

7 tips for keeping your motivation mojo

New Year. New In-the-Equation You! How are you doing at keeping your motivation mojo?

For so many years, I’d start the new year by setting lofty goals or New Year’s resolutions — usually aimed at losing weight, exercising more and getting “healthy” — only to fall off the wagon by mid-to-late January. Join the club, right?!

I would inevitably feel bad about losing my motivation and start beating myself up. I used my failure at achieving my goals as evidence that I couldn’t succeed. That I wasn’t good enough. My negative self-talk countered any positive progress, and I often ended up feeling worse. Ironically, this became a self-fulfilling prophecy. I stayed overweight, unhealthy, and totally out of the equation of my life. I continued to feel unworthy. And I continued to set resolutions and start anew at the beginning of a new year.

Luckily, that’s NOT how my story ends!

Like many of you reading this, for me, New Year’s resolutions are a thing of the past. So is the negative self-talk that accompanied them and kept me stuck. The NEW healthy and in-the-equation ME doesn’t wait for Jan. 1st to set personal goals or challenge myself to do the things I want to do. I say YES! to life now and embrace a personal growth mindset — all year long.

That said, I absolutely take advantage of the calendar year close as an opportunity to reflect on the lessons and experiences of my year (The Five Lessons of 2016). And, I get focused and intentional about what I desire most in the New Year by setting clear intentions. In fact, I get totally jazzed about this work. I just no longer force it or rush it to meet an arbitrary January 1st deadline. Read more

Embracing the whole, beautiful & imperfect me. Swim outfit & all!

The surprising gift of my first 2017 adventure

This lucky girl just got back from her first adventure of 2017 — a fabulous and fun trip to Cozumel, Mexico to kick off the new year!

This trip was significant for me as it meant tackling a list of fun “FIRSTS” that included pushing outside of my comfort zone. I’ve been on a personal mission to say “YES!” to life since I lost weight and put myself in the equation five years ago.

Before my personal transformation, I held back and lived a “small” and safe life. I didn’t put myself out there or take risks. Too often I let fear rule my life decisions — fear of what others would think, fear of looking silly or doing it imperfectly, and fear of failure often stopped me in my tracks.

Perhaps the saddest part of this reality is that I had convinced myself that I could be happy living small and safe. But the truth is, I wasn’t happy. I was hiding behind the layers of fat I donned for self-protection. I hid behind my work. And at my core was a foundation of low self-esteem, lack of confidence and a fear of not measuring up.

But I’m a success story. In 2012, as I reached my goal weight and the peak of living a healthy, happy and WHOLE life, I realized by definition “living WHOLE” meant putting myself out there. Taking risks and going for it, even and especially when I was scared. I decided to live brave. That meant saying “YES!” to life and tackling a whole list of “firsts,” seeking opportunities to grow and expand — even if that meant falling or failing. It’s been a fun and joyous ride, and five years in, I’m still going strong.

So what surprised me about my first big adventure of 2017 was how in the process of saying YES! and doing new things, I ended up embracing my whole and imperfect body and self in an even deeper way. That’s pretty cool and the focus of this blog. Read more

In-the-Equation Workshops Offered in MN

Join us Nov. 12, Nov. 19 & Dec. 3 — and let’s make YOU the priority!

ITE_Survival_quote_sqAre you too busy to be healthy? … Too busy to workout. Too busy to cook. Too busy to call a friend for a walk?

How about self-care? Are you taking care of your health and well-being… pursuing your goals and dreams or just taking care of others? Dare I ask: Are you even on your to-do list?

I get it! Most of us juggle many roles and responsibilities and pride ourselves on becoming experts at multitasking. But what happens when we slip out of the equation and end up doing everything for everyone else, with precious little time to care for and nurture ourselves?

At 381 lbs., working 12-18 hours seven days a week, I was the Queen of Busy and Unhealthy! (If there’s a crown for that one, I deserved it!) I wasn’t even in the equation of my own life. Then I found a better way. I put myself in the equation of my own life and lost 200+ lbs. — and most importantly found my healthy, happy and WHOLE life. You can, too!

As I’ve been sharing my transformation story and tips on how to prioritize you, practice self-care, and achieve transformative change in your life – so many people have asked for help. I recently conducted workshops in Maine and was asked — why not Minnesota?! So here you go. Read more

Maybe what matters most is being brave

EDITOR’S NOTE: This blog is dedicated to the beautifully brave women in my life who have reminded me recently how awesome it is to both EXPERIENCE and WITNESS courage in action. Whether it’s facing a life-changing medical crisis and remaining strong and brave in the face of uncertainty, like my sister Lisa and my cousin, Donna. Or the beautiful and brave women who leapt despite their fear to put themselves and their health and happiness first as they embark on their own In-the-Equation journeys. To all the beautiful and brave women I know — this one’s for you. #brave #bravegirls #onebravething

lori-bravequote1When I was in the physical part of my personal transformation journey — nearing my weight-loss goal — someone asked me what the tipping point was for me. How did I find success this time when I had tried and failed so many other times?

To be honest, I don’t remember my exact answer. But I remember thinking later that I needed to know the real answer for myself. So I kept asking myself — what WAS different this time? How DID I do it?

A few days later, I noodled on a napkin the words: “Everything changed when I learned I could be brave and afraid at the exact same moment.” I lost 200 lbs and made my health, happiness and life a priority, the day I was brave and afraid at the same time…and acted anyway.

It was both the act of deciding and taking action that was brave. And little did I know at the time, but life with Lori-in-the-equation would require living a brave life.

Too often we let fear stop us. The fear of putting ourselves out there, the fear of what others will think, fear of failure, fear of the unknown, even fear of success, can stop us dead in our tracks. When fear stops us, we play it safe. We retract and don’t go for what we really, really want. Often we stay stuck or living small. We don’t let ourselves truly shine. And for many of us, it means we don’t reach our personal and greatest potential. Can you relate?

There is another way. The brave life. Read more

Self-Care Sunday. It works!

self-care-sunday-walkI don’t know who comes up with #hashtags for every day of the week (#motivationmonday, #tbt…) but a few weeks ago I discovered the idea of #selfcaresunday.

Though practicing self-care is a fundamental principle for my life now that I live each day with Lori-in-the-equation, I love the idea of a day devoted to rest and downtime. An opportunity to get focused and consciously in touch with what our mind, body and spirit need. It’s an awesome “time out”, if you will.

I’ve pretty much adopted the #selfcaresunday approach (unknowingly) since I began my transformation journey in Nov. 2010 and went from working 12-18 hours per day, 7 days a week, to a non-negotiable of taking at least ONE day for myself — usually Sunday.

Sunday’s have become the day to relax and recharge, to set myself up for success for the week, to enjoy fun time with family and friends, and to get grounded in what comes next. If I do need to work on those days, and often I do, I switch it up and practice #selfcaresaturday! Ha. Take that #hashtaggers. Read more

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