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Love Yah!-Lori

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Honest Answers To My Honest Struggles

Motivation is not something you can search for, and it can’t ever be found.  Motivation is instead a byproduct of TAKING action.

Every day I get up and get my butt moving in order to keep the happiness I have worked so hard to build up.  There are always a few days each week that I workout, or sit down to do my work, and I am kicking and screaming the whole time until I tell myself “I am not quitting, so I might as well finish with a good attitude.”

Honestly, what keeps me going is knowing that if I give up, I start to loath myself and those around me for no reason.  I don’t want to have anymore pity parties, selfish thoughts, hurtful opinions and wasted days full of sadness or depression just because I don’t feel like working a little harder for my happiness.

When times get rough, when I feel stuck or when I have let myself indulge a little too much, I go back to what works.  I don’t look for short cuts like I used to.  I remember that it is going to take a lot of time to get back to feeling good again.  Whenever I feel this way there is a magical list that I follow that I am willing to share with you…  Print this list out and put a check mark every day next to each one.  I promise that in 3-6 weeks you will have a whole new outlook on life.  Not a long time to be a bit uncomfortable compared to the choice of not doing it, and being unhappy your entire life, right?

Here is my LIVE WITH NO REGRETS list of how to love you again:

Say this OUT LOUD:  “I PROMISE TO FOLLOW THIS LIST UNTIL I FEEL LIKE THE BEST VERSION OF ME”

-Cut back on the crap food – No processed food.  We are what we eat and your body can’t function on junk.  The first few days are tough because your taste buds need to adjust to what healthy food tastes like again.

-Don’t go all or nothing on me!  Allow yourself small bites or portions of what you are craving each day.  That way you will slowly ween yourself off and not feel like you are being deprived and want to binge.

-Workout everyday even if you want to cry during each session or walk – keep a tissue in your pocket and keep going.  You may just enjoy a good public breakdown;)

-Avoid negative people at all costs – even if this means dodging your moms calls and writing her an email instead for a week

-Make a playlist of music so positive that it annoys you, then listen and try dancing to it with a smile on your face

-Turn the TV off and pick up a book or go for a walk!  News and TV are the two biggest culprits of wasted time and depression

-Day dream again – force yourself to imagine living out your biggest goals and dreams

-Make a dream board or get a white board and write down what you really want out of life in 30-60-90 day chunks.  Only use “I will” and “I am” anytime you think of your goals or write them down.

-No alcohol or limit to one drink a week – Alcohol will worsen emotions of sadness.  It will also disrupt your sleep and make you feel even more tired the next day.

-Get More water, fruit and veggies

-Get Tons of sleep – This will help your body burn fat and alleviate stress!

-Eat out less.  Instead, Prep your food and plan each day the night before

-Make a list of 3 things each day that would make you feel productive and get them done

-Make unbreakable appointments with people or family for fitness activities

-Invest in myself through books and self help seminars

-Help someone reach a goal so I can get outside of myself and my petty problems

-Let go of any anger, grudges or emotional ties to a story that I made up in my head about a circumstance that may have happened with someone or something.

-Stop taking things so personal

-Leave the space or area that is making you feel bad – go work somewhere else if possible, take a walk or find an inspiring place to think until you have a better attitude.

If you think I haven’t seen struggle you are nuts!  I just stopped believing the “story” I’ve been told  by others and by myself.  Instead of using it for my “feel bad for myself” excuse, I started viewing it as my reason to work harder and bust through some walls!

I was a heavy kid and I come from an overweight family.  I was also home-schooled through high school, so I never felt like I was smart enough to go after my dreams.  My family has seen more challenges than I have room to write, but I am grateful that it has helped me relate to people and made me much stronger.  Every night since I was 8 years old I would go to bed dreaming of what I would do to finally get the life and body that I wanted.  I would wake up with thoughts of what diet I was going to stick to, and then later that day I would binge and feel like a failure.  The one thing I will tell you is that every time I went off track and tried to pull back even more, get more strict and try something new, the more I pigged-out and started the cycle again.  I finally realized I just needed to stick with slow and steady, no matter how freaking SLOW it felt.  It is the only thing that works.

Remember you are more than your body.  People rely on you and need you!  If they don’t, then you need to join some group activities and PARTICIPATE!  There is no reason to have a pity party or say you don’t have people or friends that care about you.  Make people miss and need you by contributing positivity to others lives or people will not want you around!  Positive seeks positive, so to attract these supportive groups, you must first act positive and be supportive!  I know it seems backwards but this is the secret answer that all successful people know.  You must first be the change in order to get more of it in your life…

If you are not willing to fight for your happiness, then you have no right to complain that your life is not where you want it to be.  Everyone has struggles but the most happy, successful people don’t sweat the small stuff, complain or dwell on their obstacles.  They see their obstacles as fuel for the fire!

Successful people don’t have time to analyze why something went wrong, because they are busy planning ways to drive a Mac truck through the problem!  Life does not happen to successful people, they MAKE IT HAPPEN.  Patience and hard work is the only way to do this.  Don’t bother looking for a quick path because there isn’t one.  At the end of the day we choose our destiny.

Rewrite your story, and redefine what you thought you were capable of.  You are never stuck.  You either choose to stay where you are or slowly change your environment and life.  Don’t be a drain on those around you.  Choose to make the world a better place somehow.  There is a reason each of you are here.  Answer that burning question in your heart before it goes out.  Follow the list above and I promise that will reignite the fire in your heart!

Don’t waste this beautiful life wishing…  I’m Signing off with the some lyrics that have moved me, and I hope do the same for you,

“I was here” by Beyonce:

 

I wanna leave my footprints on the sands of time

Know there was something that 

Meant something that I left behind

When I leave this world, 

I’ll leave no regrets

Leave something to remember, 

So they won’t forget

 

I was here… 

I lived, I loved

I was here… 

I did, I’ve done, everything that I wanted

And it was more than I thought it would be

I will leave my mark so everyone will know

I was here… 

 

I want to say I lived each day, 

Until I die

And know that I meant something in somebody’s life

The hearts I have touched, 

Will be the proof that I leave

That I made a difference

And this world will see

[ Lyrics from

I was here… 

I lived, I loved

I was here… 

I did, I’ve done, everything that I wanted

And it was more than I thought it would be

I will leave my mark so everyone will know

 

I was here… 

I lived, I loved

I was here… 

I did, I’ve done, everything that I wanted

And it was more than I thought it would be

I will leave my mark so everyone will know

I was here… 

 

I just want them to know

That I gave my all, 

Did my best

Brought someone some happiness

Left this world a little better just because… 

I was here… 

 

I was here… 

I lived, I loved

I was here… 

I did, I’ve done, everything that I wanted

And it was more than I thought it would be

I wanna leave my mark so everyone will know

I was here… 

I am forever grateful for all of you Busy Girls and the outpouring of love and support you always give!  I hope this blog inspires you to give that extra push toward your greatness.

Much Love,

Lori

 

Sweatpants-Ville

Happy New Year Busy People!

How are you feeling after the Holidays? Ok, so can I  just be real for a second?  I was feeling pretty fluffy,  unmotivated and even a little blue for a while!  I know that even though I tried REALLY hard to keep the Holidays healthy, I still had my fill of countless bites of goodies…  I can’t lie.  I stuck mainly to veggies and “Busy Girl” recipes, yet somehow the “other” food still snuck it’s way into my mouth.  The dreaded slow calorie creep had begun.  I always think it won’t happen if I just have a few bites and a couple glasses of wine at each party, and maybe, just maybe, my body has become some sort of roaring furnace that burns calories at the mere sight of a pound cake!  Ha!  Keep dreamin’ sister!  The weight never seems to appear until the end of December….and it ALWAYS does!

You see, my husband and I both have birthdays in December and we also travel to go see our families.  The festivities never seem to end and I know most all of you can relate.  I did really good on making healthier choices while still making sure to really enjoy my company and indulge just a tad, but nothing I couldn’t  ”clean up” in a weeks time…  That is, until the last week or so…  I came down with a stomach bug and then found myself craving comfort food, and for me that is carbs.  I don’t want to see anything healthy while I’m sick!  Instead give me a carb, drizzled in carbs and make sure it’s processed for Pete’s sake!  Once this happens I know I need to start praying that I find some kind of iron-will to get  thru!  Well, didn’t find it… and here I am feeling puffy once again!

So why on earth am I disclosing this deep dark secret of the Busy Girl who is supposed to always be “photoshoot” ready?  Duh! Because I have lost my marbles!  No, not really, it’s because I want you all to see that EVERYONE struggles!  EVERYONE I TELL YOU!  Most people do it alone and in the privacy of their own home.  YUCK!  Don’t do this!  This is a one way ticket to Sweatpants-ville!  You can never leave there without leaving a piece of your soul behind!

Here is the deal,  I know a little “puff” is not the end of the world because I know what to do!  Slow and steady healthy CHOICES always win over any other plan or “quick fix.”  I know that I am ok because I have a plan in place to get back to feeling like me again!

Today I woke and had my oatmeal and berries.  I knew my husband wanted to go to the gym, and I knew that I did NOT want to go to the gym!  But, I also knew if  I didn’t go, it was one more day further from feeling great again, and  one day closer to slipping out of anything that resembles motivation and zest for anything in life.  That thought immediately made me get my gym clothes on.  Even though I did not have a “Rocky” workout, I still felt great and it totally changed my attitude and set me up to make my next smart choice.

When we were finished at the gym I totally had that weekend feeling.  You know, the one where you loosen up on your discipline and let yourself get away with a little more than usual.  Knowing better I told myself how unhappy I would feel the next day and that I wanted to wake up tomorrow and get the most out of life, instead of waking up crabby and wearing pants that cut into my sides.  So I skipped the meal that would bring me 30 minutes of temporary pleasure (if that, have you seen me eat?).  DOUBLE WIN!

So I will leave you with this.  Tonight I sit and write this after just a couple days of making the tough choices, and I feel happy, excited and motivated again.  Recognize when you are slipping, get to the gym, clean up your food, and if you need to talk to someone, DO IT!  No one is judging you because we are all feeling the same!  Stop beating yourself up and just CHOOSE to get out of the cycle and treat yourself right.  Every single moment is a choice waiting to happen.  Make enough good ones, and all of sudden you have finally achieved your goal and you feel unstoppable!

You never realize how important your health is until you no longer have it.  Do it for you and the people who love you!  You become a better everything when you love yourself, and that starts with being healthy and happy!  You are not alone Busy Girls!  We are in this together!

Love and health to you and your families in 2011,

Believe Me, I Know How You’re Feeling!

Here we are in February already!  We should be waist deep in our New Year’s goals and well on our way to the new us, right?  Oh, where does the time go?  I look back at a handful of years and I remember lists of unmet resolutions and countless hours spent making outrageous plans to try to reach them.

I recall having insomnia for years because I would lie in my bed and think about how I was going to lose weight and finally have the life I dreamed of.  It seemed in my head that being thin would be my answer to ALL of my problems, and maybe, it would even bring world peace!  Yes!  Yes!  I think so!  The one word that summed it all up for me was EXTREME.  When it came to weight loss and getting my life in order I knew BIG things needed to take place, so I decided to go from nothing to everything in one day flat.  Little did I realize the mental transformation that would need to take place in order to get anything done.

I would wake up to the first day of my new life and I would start with my 8 cups of water all at once.  “No more dry skin and dehydration for me!  I am flushing myself clean!”  Next, I would take all of my new vitamins that I just spent a small fortune on.  “I don’t even know why I need these but I must be deficient in Riboflavin!”  Of course I would eat some breakfast because I heard that is going to rev my metabolism.  “This low carb processed protein bar that tastes like play-dough is perfect!  Gotta watch those carbs ladies!”  So off to the gym I went for an all out 2 hour RAGER!  “Wow, if I keep this up people are not even gonna know what hit ‘em when they see this coming!”

On my way home from the gym I would start feeling dizzy, followed by nausea, hunger and a severe headache.  I would get home, lay on the floor and moan by myself while the room spins and I am holding back my cookies from too many vitamins, bad protein and a surplus of water.  I’m down for the count.

I am embarrassed to admit this, but “brilliant plans” like these were put into play for years.  I would often cry at the end of these days because I was clearly setting myself up to fail without knowing it.  I was so tired and hungry that I would end up eating way too much just to try and feel better. This ultimately made me feel like I would never be like the “have-it-all girls” I would see in magazines.  I just figured they were strong and I was weak.  I am going to spare you of all my other wonderful plans and hard lessons and move onto some good ones.

SLOW AND STEADY.  No matter what.  This allows you to stay in the race for the long run.  Plan your meals and make sure they are still tasty and healthy.  This will allow you to make this a way of life and enjoy being healthy instead of feeling deprived.  Let Betty-Busy-Body tell you how she is doing 5 hrs of cardio while on a new cabbage soup and Cayenne pepper diet.  She’ll be back in the drive-thru line next week.  Can you blame her?

As for the workout, it is so important to make sure you are working out with INTENSITY no matter what you choose to do.  However, you will only be able to maintain true intensity for around an hour before you burnout.  Make sure your workouts are impactful and balanced.  Too much of anything is not sustainable.  If you need a little more cardio after strength training (or vice-versa) try breaking it up so you can put good effort into that also.

MAKE SMALL GOALS EACH WEEK.  Yes, reach for the stars but let’s do it the smart way.  Incorporate one new healthy goal each week.  Example:  This week I am packing my lunch and snacks everyday.  Next week I am adding 20 more minutes on all of my cardio sessions.  Third week I am finishing and adding a little more weight to all of my workouts no matter what.  If you do it all at once it will eventually make you feel overwhelmed and defeated.

SURROUND YOURSELF WITH POSITIVITY.  Easier said than done.  Believe me I know.  I held myself back for years asking myself  “Who do you think you are to try to be (fill in the blank?)”  You ARE the thoughts that you think.  Even if you have negative energy all around you, you can still ultimately decide your reactions.  If you find yourself in a bad environment, change your surroundings when you can, but if you can’t, you really need to fight like mad to control your thoughts.  You are worth it, you are strong, and you deserve to feel happy.  You have so much to share and you know it.  Don’t let anyone tell you your worth.  I found people will surprise you when you choose a healthy lifestyle. They either support you or they stomp their feet like babies and can’t handle your new choices.  You decide which lifestyle makes you happier.  If people truly care about you, they will want to see you happy and end up eventually coming around.

CONFIDENCE, HARD WORK, and POSITIVITY.  Say hello to your three new best friends!  Even when you are feeling none of these things, you better channel your “inner liar” and tell yourself these words define you.  Fake it till you make it…Best thing you can possibly do for yourself!  The most successful people just happen to be the best at hiding the fact that they were once shaking in their britches!  Don’t even say it out loud.  The more you think it or say it, the more you believe it, and let it control or define you.

Repeat these three key words and these will help you out in any situation.

The bottom line is no matter what your goal is, you have to start with a smart plan.  Don’t go too crazy and don’t be in a race with anyone but yourself.  After all, you will be your own biggest obstacle or your own biggest fan, it all comes down to you.  No excuses or justifying.  Find what works for you and remember that these things take time. Do your homework, learn as much as you can about what you are trying to achieve and always choose the healthy way.

Best of luck,

7 Tips To Weather The Storm

Have you ever had one of those days?  The kind where you feel like you ran your head into a wall and wish you could move to a deserted island where you pick coconuts for a living and the only person you talk to is a volleyball?

What do you do to stay centered, to remember what you’re truly about, and why you started out on this path you chose in the first place?

For me, although I have a very sunny disposition, there are times I get hit by an unforeseen storm.  No matter how beautiful of a place we have set ourselves up to live in our minds, we can only control so much.  With that being said, the only thing we have control over is battening down the hatches and riding out the storm, or in these cases, how we react.

I will be the first to admit that I am not perfect, so clearly my first reaction to moments of serious stress is tears, anger, bouts of hysteria and manic phone calls to loved ones so they can sympathize with me.  Am I right?  Once I realized that route was only sending me and the poor soul on the other line into a tizzy, I try a new plan that can actually fix the problem.

Since I know that no “outside” guy can do an “inside” job, I have to stop and take a moment of reflection when stress hits.  Now, I’m not trying to get all crazy on you but the truth is that nobody knows you and your intentions but you, and at the end of the day the only thing that matters is if you are okay with how you reacted, and also if it fit in with your belief system, whatever that may be.

In moments like these the majority of the population runs, hides, creates drama or turns to food or drink.  All of these sound like great choices if your willing to gain weight, be depressed, create a bigger problem and go nowhere fast.  This leads me to option B.  Time to put my big girl pants on grow some thicker skin.  Take a while, think it thru, then suck it up and get it together woman!  Everyone is dealing with big issues in one way or another and we are lucky just be alive.

Whatever form your “El Nino” takes I have a few things to try to remember.  Your problem feels bigger than it really is at that moment.  Sometimes all it takes is some good rest and exercise to clarify an issue.  Don’t over dramatize the situation because it could ALWAYS be worse.  Try not to bring others into it unless you have to, and even then don’t beat a dead horse.  You are strong and can handle more than you think (and then some).  The best lessons I have ever learned have come from what seemed to be the devastating moments of my life.

Life works in mysterious ways.  Be true to yourself and let go of any resentment, stress or fear and practice forgiveness of others and yourself.  There are no highs without the lows.  Have faith in yourself and don’t let any moment of stress rob you of living the life you deserve.  Clean it up as quick as you can and move on to the good stuff.  Happiness is seeing past the stresses and knowing we choose our battles.

 

Here is to a “healthy” stress free spirit,

Do My Goals Make You Uncomfortable?

Lately I have been wondering about the shift in thinking, in terms of people trying to lead a healthy life.  In the past people seemed to be looked at with concern if they were rapidly gaining weight or not taking care of themselves properly.  As of late, I’ve noticed a completely different trend.  It seems that you are the odd man out if you prioritize your health and go out of your way to make sure you are getting exercise and eating healthy food.  Now, I do understand that there are extreme measures that can be looked at as obsessive, but in my opinion we have veered so far away from healthy lifestyles that anything above bringing a lean pocket to work is considered abnormal.

Clearly with the state of our health in this country, and at the rate which obesity is increasing, something has drastically switched over the years.  Is it our thinking, our habits, our education about food, our accessibility to unhealthy food, our culture, our attitude, our impatience, our issues of entitlement, or all of the above?

I come from a family that has always struggled with weight.  For a long time I thought I was over weight because of my “bad genetics.”  After years of reading and educating myself I realized I was unable to lose the weight because of my “bad habits.”  This was hard for me to grasp since I knew letting go of those habits meant letting go of the few things in my life that I felt were giving me happiness.  My entire life revolved around food and truly felt I deserved to be able to eat what I want, when I want. To me food meant fun, bonding, love, happiness, gratitude, acceptance, rewards and above all comfort.  Little did I know that it was my love affair with food that was also giving me feelings of self loathing, weakness, embarrassment, lack of energy, sadness and loneliness.  I remember starting these thoughts at the tender age of eight.

Talking with my clients, and from my own experience I realized people are given a hard time whenever they try to make a healthier lifestyle change.  For many this is because people do not want to be reminded of what they should be doing or they don’t want to lose the reliable lunch, drinking, gossip, care taker or whatever buddy they have come to rely on.  If all is status quo, they never have to change or feel bad about the choices they make.  That is, until one day when someone breaks up the pack and decides to pursue health and tries to better themselves!  The person who has decided to set these goals has the best intentions in mind, but for some reason some people around them feel as though they are personally being threatened by having their environment CHANGED!  Questions pop in their head like, is he/she judging me on what I am eating? A: NO.  Is he/she thinking I am lazy? A: NO!  Is he/she thinking she is better then me now because he/she has will power?  HECK NO!  HE/SHE just wants to try to feel better and be happier!

If you have set healthy goals for yourself, AMEN!  It’s the only way to get what you want out of life!  You are one of the few who has found the missing link to being happy, content and healthy.  We are not born this way!  It is a lifelong endeavor and search to continue to better yourself and remain disciplined in order to continue to gets life’s rewards that are waiting for those who work hard.  The only answer to this huge problem is to start with yourself and your own family.  Stop all the blaming and justifying,  and learn about what you should be doing and eating and take action.  Be and set the example you want for others.

Leaders will always be criticized in the beginning and that is what makes them stronger.   If you are thinking this sounds too tough and unrealistic then you have already chosen your future.  It all starts with your thoughts and attitude.  A healthy life is right around the corner and the smallest of steps make a difference.  Don’t rely on others for happiness and remember, the road is long but in the end it is better than you can even imagine.  Do it for you and your loved ones and start living your best life possible!

 

Set your goals high, never apologize for them and don’t stop until you get what you want!