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Posts tagged ‘wholehearted living’

Five lessons of five years living in the equation (sans -200 lbs)

With gratitude from the mountaintop

Those of you who know me personally or have followed my blog, know that I’ve used a mountain climbing analogy to describe my personal transformation journey. I truly believe that as we conquer the mountains, we conquer ourselves.

One of the fundamental things that’s different about me as I celebrate five years of living in the equation sans -200 lbs is that I now actively seek those mountains. I say YES!, accept the challenge, and aim to live a WHOLE life, not just a busy one. I do this because I know that as I conquer the mountain (literally and figuratively) I will grow and bloom. In fact, this is where the growth and bloom occurs.

As a fit and active girl, I take it to the mountain when I’m searching for answers, needing a restart, wanting to feel strong and fit, when I want to challenge myself, and to celebrate every significant milestone in this journey. It’s my go-to place…my sanctuary…the place I feel closest to the Universe. And, it’s where I’m actively conquering me.

Last week, I took it to my all-time favorite mountain — Penobscot in Acadia National Park, Maine. I embarked on a solo climb to celebrate my 5-year milestone and ponder my biggest and next question: “What do I need to say YES! to right now?” As usual, the mountain did not disappoint. 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

Three years – another cool milestone!

LoriSchaefer-After-BigPantsThree years ago today, I was leaving weight-loss boot camp on the North Shore of Lake Superior to begin my transformation journey at home. My journey yielded a -211 pound weight loss, nearly -50% body fat loss, and sparked a self-acceptance and internal happiness that for so many years I didn’t believe was possible. And, it continues today.

I remember vividly my mindset when I walked out of boot camp. After losing 21 pounds in 12 days and pushing myself past serious physical pain, fear and heart ache — I gained a new perspective that has grounded me to this day. I left boot camp knowing that I could do absolutely anything. Knowing that I was physically capable and strong, internally stubborn, goal oriented and focused, and that nothing could stop me, but me.

Now, three years later, I’ve successfully maintained my weight loss for more a year and a half. I live in the center of my equation and lead a healthy and happy life, and hopefully inspire others to do the same. But most importantly, I live fully knowing I can accomplish absolutely anything. And I am opening myself up emotionally and taking risks in ways that I didn’t before when I was hiding behind all that weight. There is no greater gift. Read more

Blessing for a new beginning

flower, emergingLast evening I had the privilege of spending a couple of hours with some amazing women at a Women’s Leadership Community event. When I am in the presence of really beautiful, strong, courageous and authentic women, it gets my juices flowing and my spirit soars! I always learn something – about myself and others. And I find that I come away renewed and inspired. Read more

The daily practice of gratitude

Grateful for courage, compassion, connection; health and happiness
“God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one to say “thank you?” — William A. Ward

I’ve started this gratitude blog at least three times this past week/weekend and have suffered a serious case of  writer’s block each time. Today, it gets published no matter how eloquent. The truth is, I get emotional when I think about the magnitude of all that I am grateful for these days.

The season of gratitude is upon us and I have always believed it is important to step back, take stock, and express my gratitude for the gifts and the people in my life. This year, however, one of the greatest gifts is the daily practice of expressing gratitude.

Read more

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