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Posts tagged ‘live well’

The power of acceptance

We can’t change what we cannot ACCEPT. And that includes ACCEPTING what we can & can’t control.

I was talking with someone the other day about my transformation journey and five-year anniversary and she fixated on one question: “Aren’t you mad that you have to work so hard to stay healthy and fit and that you’ll struggle with this for the rest of your life?” (No!)

In another conversation recently, a close friend was having a terrible time accepting the reality of depression and was spiraling deeper because of his refusal to accept it. It made me sad.

In a much more trivial moment, I was personally challenged to accept the answer I got from American Honda about a serious defect in my Honda CRV that might cause the engine to blow up and their process for dealing with it. (Don’t even get me started on this one!)

How many of you have had difficulty accepting a misfortune —  something you don’t really like or want in your life? Yep, I’m guessing pretty much everyone.

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Say YES!…it changes you

What do I need to say “yes” to?

This was the reflection question that came across my email about a month ago in the weekly podcast post, “Best of Ourselves” from my friend and leadership coach, Marcia Hyatt. The podcast was titled “Saying Yes.” Of course, I clicked on it instantly.

YES! has been my favorite word for five years.

It’s been a big part of my new life as a happy, healthy and fit girl living from the center of the equation. Since I hit my weight-loss goal in May 2012, I’ve been on a YES! mission to live, experience and DO all the things that I was too afraid or ashamed to do as a BIG girl living a small life. And I’m having a ball!

Saying YES! does NOT mean saying yes to everyone and everything. It does NOT mean giving it all away while focusing on others. That might have been my old definition, but it’s also how I lost myself along the way.

Nope. Today, saying YES! means pushing outside of my comfort zone…saying yes to the things that scare me…saying yes to living brave…going for what I really, really, really want…validating that who I am is enough. And, that distinction is absolutely critical. Read more

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

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