Stress! Who isn't stressed anymore? COVID-19, kids home schooled, and being home all day everyday! Learn how to focus and be accountable during a Pandemic in this episode of GFP Live with Cathy and Tom!

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Stay tuned next week on Tuesday night for a new Episode of GFP Live with Cathy and Tom!

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I just saw this story post on Facebook:

The 92-year-old, petite, well-poised and proud lady, is fully dressed each morning by eight o’clock, with her hair fashionably coifed and makeup perfectly applied, even though she is legally blind. 

She was moved into a nursing home today. 

When told her room was ready she smiled sweetly as she was provided a visual description of her tiny room. “I love it,” she stated with the enthusiasm of an eight-year-old having just been presented with a new puppy. 

 “Mrs. Jones, you haven’t seen the room …. just wait.” 

“That doesn’t have anything to do with it,” she replied. “Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time. Whether I like my room or not doesn’t depend on how the furniture is arranged, it’s how I arrange my mind. I already decided to love it. It’s a decision I make every morning when I wake up.

I have a choice; I can spend the day in bed recounting the difficulty I have with the parts of my body that no longer work, or get out of bed and be thankful for the ones that do. Each day is a gift, and as long as my eyes open I’ll focus on the new day and all the happy memories I’ve stored away, just for this time in my life.” 

She went on to explain, “Old age is like a bank account, you withdraw from what you’ve put in. So, my advice to you would be to deposit a lot of happiness in the bank account of memories Thank you for your part in filling my Memory Bank. I am still depositing.” 

And with a smile, she said: “Remember the five simple rules to be happy: 1. Free your heart from hatred. 2. Free your mind from worries. 3. Live simply. 4. Give more. 5. Expect less.”

(Disclaimer I did not personally write this beautiful story.

I was moved by it and wanted to share. Photo by Dina Goldstein) 

 The story reminded me that November is a great month for gratitude - with Thanksgiving coming it’s a great time to recognize the good in our lives and what you are thankful for.

Expressing gratitude is an essential part of recovery. In psychology research, gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness.

Simply put, the happier we are, the faster we recover from stress - and the less stress we have, the less body fat we gain or retain.

Here’s how:

Positivity helps us tap into the parasympathetic nervous system, or "PNS."

The PNS is the system that relaxes us and calms us down.

Activating the PNS lowers stress hormones (cortisol) that make us store fat.

Cortisol is our friend in times of “fight or flight”, but it is our enemy if we’re not being chased by a lion. When cortisol is high ALL the time (like when we’re bombarded with stress) cortisol makes us store fat.

The more positivity we have in our lives (like expressing gratitude) the more we can dampen the effects of cortisol.

So, express gratitude and soak up the positivity: you’ll be happier and leaner!

Here are a few ways you can express gratitude in your day: 

My challenge for you this month: Write down one small thing that you are grateful for every day. 

If you want, join me in posting it on Facebook or send me in an email once a day until Thanksgiving. Saying it out loud or putting it down on paper is one of the best ways to express gratitude!

Remember each day is a gift!  The more gratitude you share the happier you will be and it will pass on to others around you!

My Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for my sweet baby girl Ella, who truly is a bundle of joy!

I feel better already!!

To read more of Michelle's recovery articles, click here...

It’s hard getting to bed early.

I know that now more than ever - with a baby, every second after she falls asleep is ME time.. time to get things done, spend with my hubby or just relax and BREATHE!!

But, I still know I should be getting to bed earlier.

I know this because the hours before midnight are SO precious!  If you remember from last week, sleep before midnight is the most valuable. 

One of the best tips that I’ve discovered that’s helped me get to bed earlier is this:

Set an alarm 30 minutes BEFORE bedtime to

remind you to start getting ready. 


IT’S AMAZING! Setting an alarm before bed! Who would have thought?!


I have a Jawbone fitness tracker with a feature that allows you to set an alarm for bedtime.


So every night at 9:30pm it buzzes on my wrist and the app on my phone flashes a message, “It’s time to start getting ready for bed.”


My husband totally makes fun of me for this - he calls me grandma and asks “Who has an alarm for bedtime?!” 

But guess what? It works!


As soon as my alarm goes off it reminds me that I should get bed. It’s like having a coach (or your mom…) reminding you to do what’s best for you.


I like setting an alarm for 2 reasons: 


  1. It's a true reminder to go to bed – sometimes we just lose track of time and need a reminder
  2. It tells us it’s time to start getting our bedtime routine going. If you don’t have one now, I recommend setting up a bedtime routine. It signals our bodies that it’s time to calm down and get ready to sleep.


If you have a fancy wrist band or fitness tracker to do this, that’s awesome, BUT You don’t need one!


Simply set an alarm on your smart phone or a real alarm clock (that thing that sits on your bedside table) to repeat every night at the same time.


The best alarm clocks are the kind that you have physically shut off because it forces you to stop what you are doing.


Give it a try! Be like me and grandma… set an alarm and GET TO BED!

When it comes to sleep, it turns out that the early bird really does get the worm…

But it’s not about getting up earlier, it’s about GOING TO SLEEP earlier!

I know, after a long day of work or school, all you want to do is relax and watch your favorite show on TV - not go right to bed.

HOWEVER, if you want to get stronger, have more defined muscles, and get leaner, then you NEED to adjust your bed time.

It’s easy …. all you have to do is go to bed BEFORE Midnight.

You already know that getting enough sleep is important - but sleeping at the right times can be the difference maker between average and awesome results.

What’s so magical about the hours before Midnight?

It’s not like you’re Cinderella - you won’t lose your glass slippers and your couch won’t turn into a pumpkin.

Going to bed earlier is key because it helps us stay in tune with our circadian rhythm.

Our levels of melatonin (a hormone that gets us ready for sleep) rise after sunset – telling us it’s time to get to bed. This is because our bodies are meant to sleep close to when the sun sets (turning off artificial lights close to bedtime will also help).

Melatonin then stimulates the release of GROWTH HORMONE. Growth Hormone is the “fountain of youth” hormone that helps you repair and restore your body. It stimulates metabolism and tells the body to burn fat.

Growth hormone release climbs within the hours before 12 and then peaks at midnight.

Your new bedtime:

To get more from your night's rest, make sure you’re ASLEEP by 10pm.

That way you get at least 2 solid hours before midnight.

Ben Franklin said it best: “Early to bed, early to rise.”

It’s also been said that 2 hours before midnight is equal to 4 hours after midnight. Now you know why.. if you want more Growth Hormone released GET TO BED Earlier!!! You’ll be a smarter, happier person for it.

Think back to high school chemistry class: Do you remember the term pH balance?

You might not want to think back to chemistry class (ugh.), but experts agree - if you're concerned about being healthy, looking good, and losing fat, that lesson on pH turns out to be very important! 

Let’s review our Chem 101 notes: 

"pH stands for power of hydrogen, which is a measurement of the hydrogen ion concentration in the body. The total pH scale ranges from 1 to 14, with 7 considered to be neutral. A pH less than 7 is said to be acidic and solutions with a pH greater than 7 are basic or alkaline.”

When the body is in good working order, human blood reveals a narrow pH window of about 7.357.45 (slightly alkaline). 

Think of it another way: the body likes to be highly oxygenated - this environment is "alkaline" and helps the body recover quicker, prevent illnesses like cancer, and burn fat. 

Unfortunately, most people (especially those who are overweight) are more acidic. Scientists have found that many overweight people have an acid problem, which prevents them from losing fat. When we are acidic, fat tissue protects the body from the acid, so our body tries to retain it. 

In order to be a feel better, heal quicker, and burn more fat, you must be slightly alkaline. 

Here are 3 easy ways to get more alkaline:

1. Make 70% of your diet alkaline foods. 

To do this, eat lots of: Greens, almonds, carrots, dates, avocados, limes, coconuts, celery, cucumbers, walnuts, peppers, spinach, asparagus, wheat grass, green beans, figs, and radishes. 

And try to limit acid forming foods: SUGAR, processed fats, processed animal meats, white flour, cow’s milk, cheese

Just remember: "go green” and eat veggies at every meal!

2. Start your day right.

Wake up and immediately drink water with lemon - this helps to alkalize the body. Then, eat a breakfast of protein and greens. Skip the fruit and sugar!

3. Drink plenty of water and fresh greens drinks: 

Alternate water with a greens drink (like Doctor’s Greens) all day. Aim to get half of your body weight in ounces of water every day. 

Sugar = acid and acid = aging.

An aging body cannot heal, perform or burn fat optimally. So do your best daily to encourage an alkaline environment for your body. 

Keep it simple: just remember "GO GREEN!" 

Have you ever noticed how well you sleep after you’ve been outdoors for the day?

Think back to a day when you spent time out in the sun at the beach, or shoveling snow for a few hours or even just spent time doing yard work.

How well did you sleep that night? How about your kids? Ever notice how well they sleep after an afternoon playing outside?

I recently spent half of a day outside doing yard work and guess what happened? I SLEPT like a baby.

Want to improve the quality of your sleep?  SPEND TIME OUTSIDE!

Why does being outdoors make you sleep better?

The quality of your sleep has a lot to do with light. Believe it or not light is crucial to our health!

Our body’s circadian rhythm, your “master clock”, is dependent on light and dark cycles. The light from outside, (also known as blue light ) streams into our eyes during the day and triggers a reaction in our brain that it’s time to be awake and energetic. There is a cascade of hormones that are released in response to bright light that keep us up.

Most of us spend the majority of our day inside. And while there may be lights on, the light we get indoors is not as strong as the light exposure we get from outside.

In order to keep your master clock running correctly you need to get bright outdoor light exposure for at least 30-60 minutes a day. At night we need maximal darkness to signal to our brain that it’s time to turn down to sleep mode. That’s why we always recommend blackout shades or sleep masks.

Simply by going outside for a walk or having lunch outside for 30-60 min can provide you with the majority of light you need to maintain a healthy circadian rhythm and get better sleep.

So get out there! Spend some time in the sun! Get your master clock running correctly for better sleep! 

We are not built for chronic stress. Human beings have not adapted to live the way that we are living now – lives filled with constant stressors.

So how to we fight back against stress? By having fun!

When we experience pleasure our bodies secrete chemicals called endorphins. Endorphins are those chemicals that make us feel happy or “on a high”. For example endorphins levels are 80% higher than normal after we experience something extremely pleasurable.  Even activities that are pretty mundane like playing with a pet, connecting with a loved one, or visiting a favorite place all increase endorphin levels.

Endorphins have been shown in clinical studies to reverse the effects of stress, strengthen the immune system, and to improve energy.

5 Simple Ways to Have Fun:

Listening to music – especially our favorite music or music that moves us.

Touch- Including receiving or giving a massage or being in physical contact with another person.

Pets- Studies have shown that people that have pets have higher endorphin levels and are healthier in general than people without pets.

Humor- Laughter raises endorphin levels and has a therapeutic effect.

Spending time outdoors – Particularly in mature and places that make us feel more connected to the world around us , spending time in prayer and contemplation increase endorphin levels and  mitigate the effects of stress.

Practicing pleasure daily is an easy way to combat stress. If you find that you are overwhelmed by stress try practicing one of the suggestions above for 5 minutes a day. Or you can find your own way to cultivate pleasure in your life. Just do something that makes you happy!

Ever had the dreaded “can’t get out of bed” feeling?

You know what I’m talking about - you want to throw the alarm clock across the room, or you’re edgy until you’ve had your Venti coffee.

I’ve felt like this MANY times and have felt groggy well into the afternoon.  This is the WORST way to start your day. I know when I start feeling like this I have to do something about it.

Because I can’t have coffee in the morning recently, I’ve learned a great trick from some very smart and well-informed mentors. These coaches use it every single morning for a boost of energy with great results. I tried it and it’s helped me so much in the last couple of months!

I call it The Lime Energy Shot.


Here’s why it works:

Lime juice helps to shift our body’s pH to a more alkaline level. Naturally, our body’s pH should be more acidic and then become more alkaline in the morning. This shift to being more alkaline helps our cells to produce more energy – helping us feel more awake.

Salt is a very therapeutic mineral that has gotten a bad rap. One of the very awesome things salt can do is nourish your adrenal glands. These are 2 glands near your kidneys that are crucially involved in releasing hormones for energy production and stress management.

Salt in the morning helps the adrenal glands bump your cortisol levels up, which will help you get out of bed more easily. Cortisol levels should be high in the morning between 6-8am and drop gradually during the day you can fall asleep at night. Many of us have flipped our cortisol rhythms and thus cortisol is low in the morning – the reason you can’t peel yourself out of bed in the morning. Make sure you use high quality colored salt – NOT white salt for this recipe.

Lime and salt also can help a great deal with digestion. Having sluggish digestion can also make us feel very tired and cranky in the morning.

So, if you would like to feel bright-eyed and bushy-tailed in the morning, try the Lime Energy Shot! Another great time for this energy tonic is around 2pm if you tend to hit that afternoon slump – or after a great workout. For more detail on lime in a post workout recovery drink check out:

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Shoveling snow can really take a toll on your body. It’s literally a pain in the behind.. neck … AND back.

Rather than looking at shoveling snow as a job that has to be done, I try look at it as part of my workout for the day. It makes it almost seem like a challenge instead of something I’m dreading. Looking at shoveling as a workout has another benefit: you must warm up and cool down from a workout. Right?

It’s tempting to get those boots and coat on and get right out there , shovel as fast as you can and them get inside out of the cold with a nice mug of hot chocolate. I’m with you believe me.  BUT the first step to being able to recover from your snow shoveling is to be in shape in the first place, and to WARM UP.

I’m warning you now… you don’t take just a few minutes to warm up and you’re putting yourself at huge risk for injury.  None of the coaches would ever let you start deadlifting without warming up, so why would you do an even more complicated movement with out a warm up?

Don’t be silly. If you have a foal roller at home, make sure to use it. Roll over all the major muscle groups especially your legs and upper back. Take a walk around the block or jumping jacks and then a few stretches. Cold, stiff muscles are at higher risk of injury than warm, supple ones.

So after you’ve pushed, you’ve lifted, and twisted your way through the driveway the shoveling job is done. Time to go sit down on the coach..   

NOT!  If you want to feel good after shoveling make sure you do a few minutes of “recovery work” immediately after.

Here’s what to do after shoveling to avoid nasty injuries: 

Stretch  - Several times through the next 24 hours

Take a Warm Shower-  let warm water hit your back muscles to relax and sooth them. Even better, try a hot bath with Epsom salts.

Stretch Again.

Take your Magnesium – Magnesium is a natural relaxer and helps muscles recover from hard work.  It’s as easy as taking your daily magnesium tablet or slathering on a few pumps of topical magnesium cream.

Stay hydrated – Hydrated muscles are less likely to get stiff and bounce back  faster after hard work. DRINK WATER.

The more prepared you are for shoveling snow the better. Truly, the best thing is to already be in good shape. So make sure you are consistent with your workouts in the gym. But ALWAYS take just a few minutes to do a short warm up before and a few recovery stretches after and you’ll be through that driveway and feel fine when you’re done.

Spring is almost here - hang in there!

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If you're wondering where you can get the protein and Greens powder Michelle used in the video, just stop by our front desk!

Have you suffered from a bad cold this winter?

The flu?  A stomach virus?

There are some really NASTY sicknesses going around this year. And they’re very hard to avoid.

BUT there IS a way!

I’ve been experimenting with recipes and foods that help with “recovery”; Simple things that can prevent you from getting dragged down by sickness or fatigue.

And I’ve found THE greatest RECOVERY ELIXIR.

It’s called…. Homemade Bone Broth.

It may not sound appetizing, but better health can be as simple as a cup of broth. 

You may have thought that the magic in broth was an “old wives’ tale”, but this one in particular turns out to be true Believe me - I've been drinking this stuff a lot in the past couple years. Whenever I’m drinking bone broth regularly I feel AWESOME.

Stock made from bones contains minerals that have been melted down so that your body can absorbthem very easily. Our bodies crave these minerals such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulphur and other trace minerals. It also contains the broken down material from cartilage and tendons – stuff like chondroitin and glucosamine that are often found in expensive supplements.

Traditional bone broth used to be a part of every meal that people made and consumed every day. Now very few of us consume bones, skin and cartilage and so we miss out on all the benefits from these parts.

You probably haven’t heard of or tried “real” bone broth. The broth that we now eat mostly comes from cans and most often has not truly been made from any part of the animal, much less the bones.

Here are a few benefits (there are countless):

I like to have a cup in the morning as a hot drink, but I also have made soups and used bone broth for sauces in cooking. As you can see consuming bone broth on a regular basis will not only protect you from getting sick, but also aid your body in the recovery and healing process; something that we all need a little help with!

Here is a basic Recipe to try: 

Chicken Bone Broth

*Note: Farm-raised, free-range chickens give the best results. Many battery-raised chickens will not produce stock that gels and is not as healthy. 

Cut chicken parts into several pieces. (If you are using a whole chicken, remove the neck and wings and cut them into several pieces.) Place chicken or chicken pieces in a large stainless steel pot with water, vinegar and all vegetables except parsley. Let stand 30 minutes to 1 hour. Bring to a boil, and remove scum that rises to the top. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 6 to 8 hours. The longer you cook the stock, the richer and more flavorful it will be. About 10 minutes before finishing the stock, add parsley. This will impart additional mineral ions to the broth.

Remove whole chicken or pieces with a slotted spoon. If you are using a whole chicken, let cool and remove chicken meat from the carcass and reserve for other uses. Strain the stock into a large bowl and reserve in your refrigerator until the fat rises to the top and congeals. Skim off this fat and reserve the stock in covered containers in your refrigerator or freezer.

Lately I’ve learned what it’s truly like to have “brain fog”. Pregnant women are infamous for having brain fog, other wise known as “baby brain”. 

Have you ever had the feeling that you can't pay attention, you’re groggy, you can't remember what day it is or what you have to do today? 

Thinking is HARD! And it’s frustrating when you’re not at the top of your game!

Unfortunately, many of us frequently suffer from brain fog, even if you’re not pregnant.

Much of this fogginess can be blamed on lack of sleep, blood sugar imbalance, food sensitivities and dehydration. Some times it’s due to hormonal imbalance, (like pregnant ladies), certain medications or thyroid conditions. So if you struggle with brain fog ALL of the time it’s important to talk to your doctor. 

Brain fog is NOT a sign of aging and it’s certainly not normal to go through your day in a fog. You’re body is telling you something when you’re in a mental rut. Something’s not working right, and it’s your job to figure it out! 

Here’s how you can beat Baby Brain: (Whether you're pregnant or not!):

All of these have seemed to helped me through my “baby brain” phase and I’m positive it will help you with regular ol’ brain fog. 

It may seem like a fleeting case of forgetfulness but if memory loss and lack of focus affects you daily, think of how much better you’d perform if you commit to some of the suggestions above. You’d get some much done! So sleep up, eat up, and drink some water!! 

By now, you should know how bad sitting down all day is for you, but it’s unavoidable.

So, what should you do?

Make sure the place where you work is ergonomically comfortable. But also try to move and change positions often! 

Maybe you can convince your boss to buy you a standup desk!

But even if you stand or spend lots of time in any one particular position at your job it can be detrimental to your body.

Fortunately you don’t have to succumb to the Desk Jockey Syndrome. You can be active at your desk!

While on conference calls, answering emails, brainstorming, finishing projects, you can get some descent stretching in! All you have to do is get creative. I like to use a chair; but you can certainly use the desk, wall, fax machine; whatever you have available to help you stretch.

Here are 5 stretches I like to do when I’m working at a desk for a long time:

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Pigeon Pose

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Hamstring Stretch

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Hip Flexor Stretch

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Neck Stretch

If you’re a “desk jockey”, the majority of your day is spent at a computer, on conference calls or maybe even sitting in a car or on a plane.

I know you can’t help it - it’s your job! This is how you bring in the cold hard cash.

The only problem is your body aches and you don’t move much.

Don’t stress - there are solutions!

Stand up Desk – There are many options for desk that adjust to your needs. Standing desks like the UpDesk  allow you to stand or sit.

Stand up Meetings – Instead of sitting during your meetings STAND UP. Not only is better for you but guarantee everyone will stay more awake and alert (Added bonus: Meetings won’t last as long if everyone’s standing).

Walking conference calls  - This one I got from Vince, who often takes calls while walking around outside. If you don’t need to be at a computer, take your calls while walking! The beauty of the cell phone is that you can go anywhere you want.

BREAK Alarm– Set an alarm every 20 – 30 minutes get up and DO something Coffee break, water break, take a walk, go visit a friend or just take a minute to stretch.

Glute Breaks – The biggest problem with too much sitting is lack of muscle contractions. We sit on our butts all day so they become very weak. One of the best things you can do is take a break and do a few minutes of glute bridges or squats; You’ll get plenty of muscle contraction.

Don’t be a slave to your seat!  Make no excuses! You can find ways to change your position throughout the day. You might have to be a little creative but you CAN do it.

Humans were designed to do some really awesome things. We can run, lift heavy things, and complete complicated tasks using our fine motor skills.

Something that we were NOT designed for is SITTING.

Our bodies are not built for sitting for hours and hours on end. Not only does it just not feel good to sit in one position for a long time but also it’s straight up not good for your health!

A few studies have found that for each hour that you spend sitting after age 25 reduces your life expectancy by 21.8 minutes!

By the numbers, sitting is more dangerous than smoking (which only lowers life expectancy by 11minutes per cigarette!!)

What’s more is that although you may spend an hour or more working out each day, your hard work does not counter act the damage done by hours of sitting.

I’m not suggesting that you replace your sitting habit with a smoking habit. Nor should you give up on your workouts all together.

I’m saying that you need to find a way to get up!

Get up off that butt!

I know what you’re thinking! “I have to sit! I have a job that requires me to spend lots of time at a computer, this is how I make money and survive!”

You may go from car in the morning, right to a desk, then back to the car, maybe to a dinner chair, back to the car to transport kids and then maybe to the couch to squeeze in a few hours of relaxation before bed. OUCH!

Not to worry! You CAN change this by finding ways to get up more often through out your day. Knowing gives you the power to take action! Here’s you action step:

Be mindful of how much time you spend sitting each day.

Add up those minutes you spend sitting.

Reduce that number by 15 min.

Then reduce by 30min , so on and so forth.

You can do that! Take a walk on your lunch break, or get up and do a minute of squats, take the stairs , get up and stretch! Search for ways to change positions throughout your day. Do what you have to do to get off that butt!

The start to your day is very important. Most of us just grab a cup of coffee, usually skipping breakfast.

Coffee is a daily ritual that for many of us wakes us up and makes us happy.

Unfortunately, while coffee and the caffeine it provides can be good for you, it can also be highly habit-forming (which is not good!)

When we do our 3 week detox at GFP, giving up coffee has been the most difficult item on the list and also brings up the most anxiety for people. Even if you're not currently detoxing, an occasional break from coffee can help reset your system, making that coffee even more effective when you go back to it.

The only problem is that giving it up is really hard!

But I have a helpful solution

The one habit that has really helped me when I'm withdrawing from coffee has been a replacement drink:

Warm Lemon Water! 

Simply warm 1 cup of water and squeeze in ½ a lemon.

Not only has this drink soothed the need for the ritual of coffee in the morning but I've also noticed that I feel much healthier drinking it first thing.

It turns out that there are potent health benefits to this combo including supporting your liver's natural detox pathways.


All of the benefits from this cup of goodness will aid the natural detox pathways in your body to do their job.

That's it! Water. Lemon. Done. Give it a try; especially if you're doing our 21 day detox and you need to replace your morning coffee.  It's delicious, satisfying and will give your body a boost for detoxification. If you'd like to spice it up , try adding a pinch of cinnamon or ground ginger.


A Magic Pill? (Not Quite)

We all know that there really is no magic pill that will keep us happy and young, but there are a few small things in this world that are pretty darn close if taken seriously and done consistently.

One of these things is simply drinking enough water.

That’s it: DRINK WATER.

Being dehydrated is NO JOKE

It causes major problems in the body such as fatigue, high blood pressure & cholesterol, skin problems, digestive disorders, kidney problems, joint pain, weight gain, and worst of all PREMATURE AGING.

Did you know that the average adult loses about 10cups of water a day just by breathing, sweating, and eliminating waste?

The rule of thumb is to drink half your body weight in ounces of water (if you weigh 160lb, drink 80oz of water each day). That's the MINIMUM! If you workout hard and sweat everyday you should be drinking even more than that.

It’s hard to remember to drink enough - if you're busy all day, it's just one more thing to do. 

Make it Easy

Figure out how much you need per day and start drinking. Find a water bottle that you can keep with you at work or traveling and keep filling it up. The sooner you make this a habit the sooner you’ll feel more rejuvenated.

One of the easiest and best tips for getting enough water is to drink a full 16-20oz glass of water first thing in the morning. This will boost your blood pressure, kick start digestion and enzyme activity and wake you up! I like to drink mine while getting ready for work!

How to get started:

Drinking more water is an easy way to get lean, beat fatigue, and feel younger!

I have a confession to make: I am a recovering cereal addict.

In high school and college I was dubbed the "Cereal Queen" because I loved it so much.

I used to eat cereal EVERY DAY for breakfast. I LOVED it.

I would also eat a bowl in the afternoon as a snack or after studying treat.

I couldn't stop at one bowl. I would eat a small bowl and then go back for a second, and then a third.

The problem with this love for cereal is that I would be dragging by the time I got to class. I couldn't think straight, I had no energy to get through even one lecture and I was starving an hour later.

When I started learning more about nutrition I quickly switched from sugar cereals like Cinnamon Toast Crunch to "healthy" cereal like Kashi and my favorite - granola with raspberries. This still didn't help my energy problem.

Breakfast is supposed to be the most important meal and I thought
I was doing it right. After all, the commercials say it's part of a healthy breakfast.

But I was dead wrong.

In the morning, you need foods that will support the waking up process and give your brain the nutrients it needs to give you energy. Cereal was NOT giving me the energy I needed to reach my full potential. In fact, by eating these sugary carbs, I was more stressed out because I had brain fog, I was tired, and was constantly hungry.

What's wrong with Cereal for breakfast? 

I've learned my lesson and I'm finally done with cereal in the mornings.  Now I make sure my breakfast is made up of 3 things: Protein, Healthy Fat, and plenty of water.

Ever since adopting the Protein + Healthy Fat combination in the morning I've had more energy, a clear mental focus and I feel less edgy. The science behind this is that protein provides a slower rise in blood sugar and the healthy fats allow the blood sugar to remain stable for a prolonged period of time.

A go to breakfast for me is rolled up turkey with an avocado or a burger with a handful of walnuts. I also make sure I drink at least 24oz of water first thing in the morning.

Follow this equation in the morning:

Cereal + Milk = Sugar Crash 

Protein + Healthy Fat = Optimal Brain Power

If you're a cereal queen or king like me, it's not too late to change your habits! The single best tip for energy, mental clarity, and fat loss is eating protein and healthy fats in the morning.

For more ideas on this breakfast ask the coaches or check out this video :

It may seem crazy that we need to "learn how" to relax.

Shouldn't relaxing come second nature to us?

We spend so much time and energy trying not to be lazy that it seems counter-productive that we need to learn to take time to relax.

Sadly, most of us get caught in a whirlwind of productivity that is hard to escape.  We need to teach ourselves that it's OK to step away from being busy and relax ... just for a little bit.

You may already know "HOW" to relax, but what most of us really need to learn is how to let go of the guilt that comes with letting yourself relax.

If you fall victim to "relaxation guilt" just know that relaxation is something your body needs. Just like food, air, water, and sleep; down time is something we need to live. We need relaxation to be the calm, creative, awesome people were are meant to be.

So if you are not yet a master of relaxation yet; its o.k. don't stress about it but take it one day at a time.

 How to get rid of Relaxation Guilt: 

"I  am a calm and relaxed person. I am taking time to relax for my health and wellbeing."  

"I am healthy and prosperous, and I am grateful for all good things in my life, and I am accepting of all abundant things coming into my life."

Instead of getting caught up in the "shoulds," think of ways that you can learn to adjust your way of thinking. Start by letting go of the negative thoughts, they are not doing anything for you.

Know that it is ok to relax. It is ok to spend time doing absolutely nothing. Creating and doing is great but you don't need to fill every minute with work. When it is time to work, pour yourself into the task, get things done, churn out quality work, cross those tasks off your to do list... and then relax again.

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For over a decade Gabriele Fitness & Performance in Berkeley Heights, New Jersey has served the thousands of busy people to lose weight, gain energy, and feel the best they have in years.
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