Thursday, December 11, 2014

Why I Chose Nursing School

*Disclosure: this post is not being written for sympathy. I am simply writing it to get my thoughts out of my head and onto a platform that may be able to help someone else in my position.

"Everything happens for a reason...
Maybe God has a bigger plan for your life that you just don't see yet."

This statement has been told to me multiple times this week. It's taken me a few days to realize that maybe everyone is right on that. Sometimes the path we think our life should be on is turned in a different direction towards something even better.

As I sit down to write this post I am filled with a mix of emotions. On one hand, I feel like the weight of the world has been lifted from my shoulders. On the other, I feel like I have had the wind knocked out of me.

Nursing has always been something I have wanted to do. It took me 24 years to realize that and make the choice to go for it. After two years of applying, I was finally accepted for a January 2013 start in a prestigious nursing program. Ecstatic doesn't even describe my excitement. I did not know just how demanding this program would turn out to be, but I was ready to go all in.

Fast forward to the end of 2014, and I was officially dismissed from my institution's nursing program due to being just under the percent I needed on my exam total. Two years worth of late nights, early mornings, a lot of coffee and studying. I failed to make the cut... AND THAT IS OKAY!!!

Even though this isn't where I saw my future... I would do it all over again because it was something I enjoyed. Stressful? YES. Worth it? EVEN MORE.

PLEASE DO NOT let this discourage you from pursuing such a rewarding and amazing career. I can't even put into words how fulfilling it is to hold the hands of your patients and comfort them in their time of need. To cry with them and talk with them... and show them that you care. You are making an impact on their lives, even if you don't feel like it at the time. The best part is, at the end of the day they are also making an impact on yours. It is the most special feeling.

This week has been hard, no doubt about that. I've cried a lot and wasn't sure what to think or how to feel. It's embarrassing and somewhat freeing all at the same time. The constant stress of excelling was starting to wear me thin and affect my relationships with people I care about. I'll admit I struggled a lot with the change in how the nursing curriculum is run as I have never really been an "A" student to begin with. However I have made some great strides in my studies over the past couple of years, learned a lot about myself, my strengths, and my weaknesses. It has opened up my eyes to the fact that everyone is going through something and even though we may feel rushed to hurry through the motions of life, it is important to stop and really soak up the moments...

To be present. To listen. To smile.
Most importantly, to enjoy every minute of this beautiful life.

I know I am meant for something great. I can feel the fire lit in my soul to turn these circumstances into something incredible. Nursing school may have not worked out for me, but if it is your passion... GO FOR IT!

Give it everything you've got and never give up on yourself.

Maybe someday I will go back for nursing... but right now, I am content with putting my faith in God and letting him guide me down the path he has mapped out for me. I will be switching my major to Population Health Management. Ideally with this degree, I would like a career working with today's youth to end the trend of obesity. I will keep you posted on how it all works out.

"Every time life knocks you down, it gives you an opportunity to get back up and rise even higher!"

No matter how BIG or how small...
Follow your heart. Chase your dreams. Give it your all.
These are my recipes for a happy and successful life.
Best Wishes!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Whatever Is Meant To Be... Will Be.

I just got the results from an exam in nursing school that I was so STRESSED OUT and sick to my stomach over... and I PASSED!!!

I am not posting this to brag, but because this semester has given me a run for my money. Hours of studying, long days of early mornings and late nights. Last week, I felt like I hit rock bottom. Defeated. I cried every single day, and was sure that my future in nursing was done. I even went so far as to make a list of back up career options, as a "just in case".

Being 28 years old, living at home, and barely being able to work due to the demands of school is tough. Throw in the possibility of all your hard work, thousands of dollars in student loans, and your future career path thrown down the drain... and it's a recipe for feeling pretty lost.

Some may think that is a bit dramatic, but I will say that to date, my track record on exams has been just below the percentage mark we need. It's embarrassing and disheartening to keep falling short, time after time.

Especially when I KNOW I will make a great nurse!

However, something changed the other day. I was sitting at a stoplight, and had an "a-ha" moment. I realized how silly I was being for focusing on the worst possible outcome. I've come way too far to turn back now. I decided to change my outlook, pick myself up, and give it my absolute best. A few tears of exhaustion later, my hard work finally shined through!

It just goes to show that when you want something bad enough, you will do your absolute best knowing you couldn't have possible done any more. If the end result is meant to be, it will be.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Shine Bright, My Fellow Coffee Lover.

*google image.
Sitting here in silence listening to the soft hum of my Keurig as it heats up the water for my second cup of Vanilla Starbucks coffee. A warm cup of delight. Delicious. My puppy is cuddled up next to me with a slew of her toys, and the washer is quietly cleaning our well-worn clothes. I silently wonder if this is what my life will look like with kids?! Only a little less silent, I'm sure.

I have so many emotions running through my mind this morning, and a persistent fire that is burning deep in my soul. I have a passion... a huge passion. It comes from the heart and it's so real, I can feel it. I want to help people. I love to help people.

Most people who know me really well will tell you I was very shy growing up. I still am to an extent, but I've come a long way. I hated being the center of attention, was embarrassed far too easily, and was so very quiet in social situations, it was as if I wasn't even there. I feared saying the wrong thing, doing the wrong thing... you name it. I focused far too much of my time and effort into what other people thought of me, that I failed to grasp my own personality. My drive. My passion. I knew I was meant for more, but I had no idea where to start.

High school came and went, and I headed off to college for a life changing, eye-opening, best 4 years of my young adult life. I met some lifelong friends, grew into my own person, and began finding my voice... and subsequently, my way. After graduation, I worked odds and ends jobs... reapplied to school, changed my major a few times, and landed in nursing. It's a perfect career move for me because it encompasses my passion of helping people with my delight of giving back to the community. But it doesn't stop there...

My love of health, fitness, mind, body, and soul led me to Beachbody Coaching, which led me to meet even more amazing friends that have become like family. I have found a way to see the positive in a world full of negatives. I am slowly recapturing the drive I once sought out as a young girl, desperate to figure out my "path" in life.

It's funny, you know... how you can find something--or someone--and you just know it is what you are meant for. Your reason for waking up each day and seizing every moment. Failing forward. Constantly learning, growing, and living with purpose.

I can't even count the number of times I was told I would never succeed. That I was making a mistake by going into nursing, becoming a Beachbody Coach, etc. etc. This told to me by people who failed to see my drive for the desires God has placed in my heart. I am blessed that I have found my niche, and am lucky to have my best friend/soulmate by my side for the journey.

I may not have it all together, but together [with God] I have it all. He will not fail me. I trust in his plan.

As one of my favorite authors (Holley Gerth) says in her book You Were Made for a God-Sized Dream, "There's a God-sized dream knocking on the door of your heart. This is your moment. Now is your time [to shine]."

Go out there and chase your wildest dreams.
Give it your all.

"Small, smart choices + consistency + time = a radical difference!"
-Darren Hardy

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Shine Bright Like A Diamond

Do you ever have those times where you look around and find you're constantly comparing yourself and your successes to those of other people? If you haven't, you're one of the very rare exceptions. The truth is, we all want to be successful at something - school, sports, our jobs, our relationships. But the difference between WANTING those things and actually achieving them is HARD WORK. It takes dedication and giving your time and efforts to helping others, while expecting nothing in return. It takes perseverance to want something so bad, that you will make sacrifices to achieve them. It takes letting go of your wants, to focus on someone else's needs.
I'll admit, I've been in sort of a funk lately. My biggest passion is helping others to live their best lives. Yet lately, I don't feel like I'm doing that effectively. I could be a better coach, a better nursing student, a better girlfriend, and a better friend... and I WANT to be those things.
I know I am capable of more. I strongly believe I have the capacity to make a positive impact in this world. To help hundreds of people realize their true potential and empower them to take control of their health and their lives. Not only through Beachbody Coaching, but also as a future nurse.
So whatever your passion is, I challenge you to chase it down and don't stop until you've succeeded. Then, push yourself farther and achieve more than you've ever thought possible. Let your light shine through in everything you do.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Grain Free Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

I first came across these delicious muffins on a friend's blog, and I went to get the recipe for them this afternoon and realized she got them from here. Oh the beauty of the internet. You can always count on blogs and sites like Pinterest to find fun, crafty projects, baking and cooking recipes, and awesome DIY stuff you might have never thought of doing otherwise!

{Anywho - It is officially Fall... which now means all things PUMPKIN!}

It is also my favorite season, so what better way than to bake some delicious muffins to honor it. These little beauties are perfect paired with a hot cup of coffee or tea, or by themselves as a little treat. They are easy to make, nutritious, and healthy! Within 10 minutes of them coming out of the oven, my boyfriend was all about trying them out. Needless to say, he loved them. I am sure you and your family will, too! Without further ado... here's how to make 'em!

What You'll Need:
1 cup all-natural almond butter
2/3 cup pumpkin puree
2 large eggs plus 1 egg white, lightly beaten
1/3 cup honey (may substitute maple syrup)
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (I used Pink Himalayan Sea Salt)
1/2 cup dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips (I used dark chocolate chips)

How to Make 'Em:
1. Preheat the over to 350 degrees F, and line a standard muffin pan with paper cup liners.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the almond butter and the pumpkin until smooth. (if the almond butter has been stored in the refrigerator and is hard, it is helpful to bring to room temperature before mixing.)

3. Stir in the eggs and honey. Mix in the pumpkin pie spice, baking soda and salt. Stir in the chocolate chips, reserving a few for the top, if desired.

4. Using a large ice cream scoop or a 1/4 cup measure, pour the batter evenly among the muffin cups. Top each with a few reserved chocolate chips, if desired. (I took advantage of this because I love chocolate!)

5. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the centers are just firm.

6. Allow to cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes, and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

7. Stored in an air-tight container in the refrigerator, the muffins will keep for at least a week. (They may also be frozen and thawed as you eat them.)

**Tip: If you prefer to forego the chocolate chips, you may substitute raisins, dried cranberries, nuts, or a mix of all three.

Now go out and enjoy some of these yummy Fall treats! :)

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Bombshell Retreat

A couple of weeks ago, I was lucky enough to be invited to a FREE weekend get-away to a cute little tucked away cabin with some fellow entrepreneurs. I didn't hesitate very long before I booked a plane ticket to fly out to Pittsburgh, PA, where I met some of the most inspirational and amazing people ever. It all came about because of the hard work and dedication I have put into my Beachbody business over the past few months. This business has given me confidence, strength, a feeling of success and accomplishment. It has blessed me with some of the most amazing friends a girl could ask for... and better yet, the most liberating and humbling feeling I get every time I help someone get closer to their health and fitness goals.

So, without further ado... here are some pictures from my weekend get-a-way. It was full of laughs, hugs, smiles, business building, team building, group workouts, and feeling happy just to be in the company of one another. This was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I am SO thankful, happy, and blessed to have been a part of such a wonderful and life-changing weekend away.

This could be YOU!!! Are you motivated by FUN, fitness, financial independence, freedom to be your own boss, HELPING others achieve their goals, FREE trips and incentives to continuously work harder to become a better version of yourself, while motivating, supporting, and inspiring others to do the same? If this sounds like you, email for more details on how to get started on building your own business! I would love to have YOU join our growing team!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

From Preemie to Healthy & Fit

Something resonated with me this past weekend. I was sitting at a BEAUTIFUL cabin in Pennsylvania, with some friends. Topics were being thrown around about life at home, our jobs, our futures, and what we wanted most out of life. I felt like I had already learned so much from everyone else... yet, my quiet nature kept me from talking about myself and my goals, too much.

However, something happened that really made me realize what a great gift I was given almost 28 years ago. It all started with someone asking me about my voice. It is raspy and can sometimes sound like I have a cold, to other people. Here's a little back story to set the tone. I was born 4 1/2 months premature, weighing in at 1 pound, 10 ounces and 12 inches long. No need to worry about your eyesight... yes, you read that correctly. I was a miracle baby, as my grandparents and parents always told me growing up. The doctors said I might not survive, and if I did... I would have a lengthy list of medical problems.

Me as a preemie
My parents had no idea what they were up against, as I was their first child. I can only imagine how scary it was for everyone involved. Back then, there was not all of the enhanced technology we have today. Many months, treatments, and prayers later... I was sent home two days before my due date. It is my understanding that I was still quite small, but the nurses and doctors trusted that my parents and extended family would take great care of me. I would be lying if I said they didn't. I have lived a very great life, so far. I fought like hell to survive... and I am eternally thankful to God, my family, and my amazing medical team who cared for me. And, as for the medical problems the doctors thought I would have... the worst of it is a very strong prescription for my glasses/contacts, and a raspy voice to which this blog post all came about.

I should note that I have one of those raspy, made-for-radio voices. So I am told. When I have previously inquired about why I sound the way I do, I was told that it was from all of the tubes I had as a preemie. Anyways, I was asked a few times this past weekend (and pretty much once a day, my entire life) if I was sick or why my voice sounds like it does. I did not take offense to that question as I used to, years ago. I simply smiled and told them my story.

I have had my fair share of struggles growing up. With being made fun of for my voice, being far too shy and quiet, trying too hard to be "perfect" so I could fit in with the "cool" crowd in school, struggles in school with learning, and basically losing sight of the big picture. I focused so hard on what I wanted right this minute, that I never planned for the long term. That was, until recently... Until I found a way to be healthy, get fit, and take charge of my future. Most importantly learning how to feel GOOD about myself! I was sick of hiding and making excuses for why things weren't going like I wanted them to, or why I acted the way I did. I obviously survived being born premature for a reason, so why was I going to waste my time shoving fast food and chemically processed junk into my body?!

I want you to know that it is never too late to change your life around. I used to think my prematurity set me back from the crowd. Like I wasn't good enough, creative enough, smart enough, or interesting enough for other people. Now I realize that none of that matters. What does matter is how I feel about myself, and that I do what it takes to live my happiest life.

It's time for me to DREAM big. BELIEVE in myself. and ACHIEVE the greatness that I know I am meant for. Are you ready to do the same?

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Beauty Meets Passion

This is a beautiful message. I am sharing it because I think it is very important that us women see that NO ONE is "perfect". We all have flaws, imperfections, and things we do not necessarily like about ourselves. This message spoke to me that I should love my self and my body. The good and not-so-good. There is no one else like me. That is what makes each of us unique. Each of us an individual.

I realize that society portrays this "ideal" self image of being super duper skinny, starving yourself or using diet pills to get there, and sending the message that this is raw beauty. I'll be the first to tell you, it's not! Beauty is inside each of us. We just have to be willing to see that.

A little bit ago, I had this realization about my life and things that I am passionate about. The tiny thought sort of snowballed over the morning, into something much deeper than I expected. It went a little something like this. Every one of us is passionate about something. Your career, children, education, family, friends, art, music, photography, using your skills and talents to style other people's hair, writing, helping people, health/fitness, and the list could go on. Then a thought popped into my head... something that I have never thought about before. We all share what we are passionate about with our families, friends, and people we meet along the way. We do this because we believe so highly about our passions that we want other people to believe in them and embrace them, too!

This brings me to my next thought. It is very obvious by now that I love health and fitness. Do I love to workout every day? NO! But I do it, because I know it will keep me healthy. Do I love to pass up that second piece of cake EVERY time?! Absolutely not. But I know that my body is fueled on nutritious foods more than processed, so I pick and choose my "happy" meals (aka. cheat meals). Am I saying you can't indulge ever? No way! Moderation is key. In fact... I had that second piece of cake at my niece's birthday party last night. It was delicious! Though, I will not be making a habit of it.

There are times when I feel people misconstrue my passion for living a healthy lifestyle, with pushing people to meet that unrealistic "ideal" image. As I have said many times before... no two people are the same. That's what is so beautiful about life. We each have our own individual personalities, attractions, favorite parts of ourselves, and flaws. That is why I promote HEALTH... not just weight loss. I promote FITNESS. Not a certain jean size. Most of all, I promote the opportunity for each and every one of you to live your best lives. Full of happiness and love for yourself and others. Never let anyone tell you you're not good enough, beautiful enough, or "skinny" enough. Love yourself, because you are worth it!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

On The Inside Looking Out

As I sit down to write this post, I hesitate. But, I think it will be helpful for people to understand exactly where I am coming from in working my Independent Beachbody Coaching Business. When I decided to sign up as a coach six months ago, I was skeptical and pretty sure I'd cancel it within the first 30 days. I had no idea what I was supposed to be doing. All I knew going in was that I wanted to help people. I had a clear vision of helping individuals from all different walks of life, to improve their health. I am not out to make people feel bad about their weight or their body image. I want to make that very clear. I think sometimes people are misreading my passion and enthusiasm of fitness and healthy eating, with judgement of others for not being ready to invest time and money into their health. This could not be farther from the truth. To use programs like P90X, Insanity, ChaLEAN Extreme or any of the at-home fitness programs, doesn't mean you are necessarily looking to lose weight. A lot of times, people do start these programs for that purpose because of how well they work. However, I use them for maintenance purposes, and because I love that they are short and scheduled out day-by-day for me.

I am a normal human being, just like the rest of you. I love sweets, skip workouts, and sometimes even enjoy overindulging in goodies around the holidays or at family parties. I am far from perfect, but I made a commitment to better myself each day. That is something I am continuously working to improve upon. Getting healthy seems like an impossible task to a lot of people. They worry they can't do it, that they won't be good enough, won't last the whole workout, won't be full from eating healthy foods more than the processed stuff. I get it. I was that girl who ate fast food at every meal in college, went out 3 nights in a row, on the weekends... and never worked out to compensate for even a tad bit of that!

When I made the decision to better my health in January 2013, I committed to 90 days. That was it. If I could make it through that, I'd be all set. Well, I made it through... and to my surprise, wanted to keep going. There was a couple months of time off in between there for personal reasons, but I jumped back in full swing to get my body to a healthy state after a lot of poor decisions when it came to my diet. I didn't have a lot of weight to lose. Maybe 10 pounds, but it was very noticeable to me in the way my clothes fit. So I committed to another 10 weeks of an at-home program. Once that was done, I realized that this is a LIFESTYLE. Fitness and a healthy diet are not just 30/60/90-days long. It takes commitment to yourself, from YOU!

Fast forward to today. I have been coaching for 6 months now. I am helping people achieve their weight loss goals, or to maintain their current weight and tone up, and to eat healthier foods in place of processed or fast foods. Whatever their journey, wherever they are on their path of healthy living. I am doing exactly what I set out to do. I am not selling an impossible dream, a magic pill, or false hope. I am educating people on what it means to invest in themselves. I am offering support, accountability, and motivation to those who might need that extra push or just want to know that someone is behind them in their decision. It isn't about a number or a size. Being healthy and confident in your own skin is what matters. I want everyone, whether I help you with your health and fitness goals or not, to realize that you are beautiful no matter what size, shape, or weight you are. Just remember that being active is vital to maintain your health. Even something as simple as taking your dog for a walk every night, or taking a bike ride through your neighborhood.

At home programs work, but I realize that is not the only way to be active and lose or maintain weight, tone up, or build up self confidence. So, when I stand behind a product I believe in, it isn't to make money or shove it in people's faces that they need to be a certain weight, a certain size, etc. I do it because I know there are people out there that will benefit from it. Some people do not like to go to the gym. I am one of those people. Some people need or want something that takes the guesswork out of it... a program that is already scheduled out what to do each day, with a meal plan to follow if they so choose. Losing weight is only one of the many reasons people begin a new fitness plan.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Leap of Faith

I am the Queen of trying to please everyone. I want to take into account everyone's happiness before giving way to my own, even if that means putting aside my own wants, opinions, or goals. I will [embarrassingly] admit that I care about what others think of me to such an extent, that it causes me great fear to go out of my comfort zone. I am shy. I keep to myself a lot. and I very rarely take chances on anything I am not 110% sure about. I can't tell you the last time I did something spontaneous, just for the experience. I've never been one to travel for any other purpose than need to do so, for fear of financial loss. Forget educational or spiritual gain. I've never thrown myself into something I am passionate about and shared it with others, because I was worried what people would think or say. I have always been hung-up on being the "perfect" friend, daughter, sister, girlfriend, cousin... that I hid some of myself.

But, what does that say about me? That I am scared to show people my true colors because I fear people will dislike me, or talk negatively behind my back. What if some of our greatest leaders decided not to speak about their passions and dreams because someone else didn't agree? Time for an overhaul on these feelings. I have booked a flight to Pittsburgh next month, to join a group of 15 other women who are helping to inspire and educate others on living a healthy lifestyle. I have also jumped full force into my position as an Independent Team Beachbody Coach... something I was always skeptical about before. Now that I am in it, I see things through a completely different mindset. I have also realized that not everyone is going to love or agree with every single thing I do, say, or write. But, that doesn't mean I shouldn't stand behind my own opinions, passions, feelings, or actions.

I am working hard to become a future NICU nurse. I put in countless hours in school, at work, and on a business to educate others in the areas of health and fitness, so that they may lead their best lives in terms of physical and mental health and well-being. I strive each and every day to be the best daughter, sister, girlfriend, family member, friend, and coworker that I am fully capable of. I have dreams... BIG dreams! and I am not going to stop reaching for them. I will continue to spread my light and embrace my passions, talents, and knowledge to those who need it most. I won't give up even when I've reached these monumental goals. I am making a lifelong commitment to myself to continuously live better, happier, and healthier than the day before. 

A wise women once said, "You have the opportunity to use your life... your BELIEFS, your TRIALS, your God given talents, and your heart to help INSPIRE others to live their best life. Don't dull your light so that others feel more comfortable! RADIATE your truth unapologetically, knowing that when you do... you are living God's purpose for your life."

I couldn't have said that better, myself.
Dream it. Believe it. Achieve it.

God Bless. xo

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Convince Yourself YOU CAN DO IT!

 Motivation: the reason or reasons one has for acting or behaving in a particular way.

A year ago, I was sitting around waiting for some magic invention to come out. A pill or a diet that completely revolutionized working out. I hated cardio and was lucky if I could work out with 3 lb. weights. Yes, you read that correctly. I could barely keep up with a workout holding 3 lbs. in each hand. As I think back, I wonder who that girl was. Why was I also feeling so tired, sluggish, and lazy? I had nothing really holding me back from being active and bettering my health... I was living back at home, no children, not engaged or married. I didn't get it. What was I lacking that other people seemed to find so easily?

The answer is motivation.

I had absolutely none. Sure, I wanted to be fit. I wanted to be healthy and feel good about myself. But, what steps was I taking to achieve that goal? I was constantly snacking on "healthy" foods and thought I was doing well. Little did I realize, it is possible to overeat on healthy foods, too! When I didn't see any improvements, I began to do some research...

First Google search: "How to get motivated to work out."
Second search: "Easy workout programs that provide results."

I'm sorry... WHAT?! No one can tell you to be motivated. And, you're not going to get any type of results without putting forth some serious effort. You have to have a WHY in place. A desire to do the necessary work to get where you want to be. If you want to be a Doctor, you have to fully commit and dedicate yourself to school for 8+ years, and work very hard to get there. The same goes for your health and proper nutrition. You have to be willing to sacrifice some things now, for the end result.

Fast forward a year later... I have successfully completed one round of Jillian Michaels' 90-Day Body Revolution, one round of Shaun T's Focus T25, five weeks of Chalene Johnson's ChaLEAN Extreme (the holidays hit and I fell off track), and am now back in the game and 110% committed to Tony Horton's P90X3!

It isn't about being perfect 100% of the time. You are going to have your struggles. There will be days you do not feel like working out, or you want that piece of pizza. One slip won't derail all of your hard work. BUT, try to remember that constant little acts of eating unhealthy and skipping your workouts add up... and that can have a negative effect on your overall results. Some advice...

1. Aim to follow your workouts during your scheduled days. If you happen to miss a day, pick up the next day, where you left off. Do not skip more than two consecutive days. Your muscles will begin to break down after that, and it will make getting back on track a lot harder.

2. Eat a clean diet 90% of the time. Save the other 10% towards one "happy" meal a week. I refuse to use the word "cheat" meal if you are dedicated to eating clean the rest of the week.

3. Try to connect with other people who are working out, too. It helps to have people who you can relate to in this new journey towards a healthier lifestyle.

4. DO NOT... I repeat... DO NOT use the scale as your only source of measuring how far you've come in your healthy eating and fitness routine. Focusing on a number makes people crazy. Instead, pick one day a week (I prefer Saturday) to weigh yourself. Do this in the morning, after you've used the restroom, and without clothes. This is the most accurate time to weigh yourself.

5. Use a tape measure to take your before, during, and after measurements. Here is a quick video of how to capture those measurements correctly.

6. Take before, during, and after photos on your desired STAT day, too. To properly take these, try to wear clothes that do not completely cover you up. Shorts and a sports bra for women, and shorts and a cut off for men. Take a full-body front, back, and side photo each week. Actually seeing your results and comparing it with your measurements from weeks prior is a much better way to measure progress.

7. Do not ever give up. When you start to think this new healthy lifestyle is not for you, remember that it is a great long-term benefit for you. It can help add years to your life, it can reverse the progression of some medical issues, and it can help you become more active and happy.

Working out is a natural anti-depressant, and the body's most underused source of stress relief. Never underestimate the good you are doing by dedicated 30-60 minutes, 5-6 days a week to bettering yourself.

If you have any questions regarding other motivational tips or fitness programs, please email me at