The Five to Thrive

I have recently completed Girl Stop Apologizing by Rachel Hollis.  If you haven’t read Girl Wash Your Face or Girl Stop Apologizing, you should.  She is a real woman just telling it like it is and baring it all.  She is not only easy to relate to, but raw and funny.  With all of that being said, she also gives some great tips on how to be a better version of yourself along with proving by her success that she has applied them to her own life.  I have always applied these five things in my life, but never considered or seen them grouped together as a sort of mantra for life.  Once I did I was hooked on the concept.  These five rules are great for everyone, especially those of you who are just dipping your toe into the idea of where in the world to start on the path to self improvement.

The five rules include, getting up an hour earlier than you normally do and use that time for yourself, workout at least 30 minutes a day, drink half your body weight in ounces of water each day, give up one food category you know you shouldn’t be eating, and finally, write down 10 things that you are grateful for each day.  I have been practicing this list for a while and steadily adding to it with other ideas that help me keep my life better organized, healthy and productive.

When it comes to getting up an hour earlier, this one was the biggest struggle, but also the holy grail to everything else in my life.  I am able to get so much stuff done before I even sit down at my desk at work by accomplishing this one rule.  I get up and go at 5 a.m. and I use another rule from another great book, The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins, to make this happen each day.  I also have an incredible morning routine programmed into my mind and body so I don’t allow myself to think about any other options (like staying in my warm, cozy bed another 30 minutes).  I jump up, wash my face, and put on my workout clothes and grab my gym bag.  I make myself a warm travel mug of lemon water and grab a bottle of water for after my workout.   I always listen an audio book on my drive to the gym.  This is when rule number two comes in to play.

I do a 30 minute workout and then I get changed and ready for my work day.  I always arrive early to work and usually I allow myself one cup of coffee while I finish my water from my workout and I usually have a granola bar and a piece of fruit for breakfast.  I get the office opened up and ready for the day and then I sit at my desk before anyone else arrives and I write, check emails and social media.  Once that is complete I start my work for the day.  When lunch time rolls around I have usually already had about half of the recommended water required to meet half my body weight.  When it comes to lunch, sometimes I bring my lunch to work and sometimes I have lunch with friends and coworkers or just grab something and go sit at the park and read.  The food groups I have removed from my diet include any and all sweets and soda’s.  I do my best to make my meals primarily veggies, fruits and a lean protein, I love fish!

On my way home from work I listen to my audio book or sometimes some music to motivate me if I have a lot I want to get done when I get home.  It is about a 30-45 minute drive for me and I hate not being productive while driving.  Once I arrive home I usually tackle everything I need to do to prepare for the next morning, laundry, making my lunch, getting my gym bag packed, then I eat dinner, shower, skin care and take time to review my calendar for the next day so I have mental game plan.  Then I crawl onto the center of my bed and take the time to be thankful, pray and meditate.  On Friday nights, if I am not making it a date night, I usually tackle some kind of household project.  This week it is my personal walk-in closet.  I usually start a project on a Friday evening while am watching one of my favorite Netflix shows and I try my best to finish the project before noon Saturday.  Lately I have been helping my significant other at his restaurant on Saturday nights and I value my Sundays as a day of rest, relaxation and time with those I love.

Building these routines and habits into my life has brought me a sense of comfort, confidence and happiness.  I love feeling organized, efficient, productive, and healthy and I have found a way to work all of the things that are most important to me into my daily life.  What habits or routines do you value in your life?

With love, health and happiness,


Changing Your Mind

I joined the Beachbody program and my new coach, April, has been very supportive.  I started a very beginner level workout yesterday and did a little more advanced today.  Funny how the most basic moves can make you sore the next day.  I am definitely not using all my muscle groups as often as I should in my day to day life.  I am sure I will be even more sore tomorrow.

I find myself looking for ways to stay motivated and determined in this process.  I don’t want to make excuses and skip a day of exercise or allow myself to eat something I know I shouldn’t.  I am realistic and know this will inevitably happen at some point in this process and probably more than once.  So I have started research, because my psychology brain knows this is a mental obstacle.  Our minds and bodies revert back to what it knows when times get tough.  Well, my body knows that eating tacos and chips with cheese dip with an ice cold beer is what I normally do when times get hard.  It also knows that curling up with a good book or watching a movie is more my jam after work than getting in front of the TV for a workout.  So how do we change our mind and condition ourselves to revert to new norm?  How do we create better habits?

I believe this is where phrases like, practice makes perfect, or stated facts like, it takes 21 days to create a habit, come in to play.  My research has brought me back to a book that I bought on audio a few years ago and never started.  I recently completed Girl, Wash Your Face and loved listening to it on my way to work each morning.  So now I am going to start The Power of Habit:  Why We Do What We Do In Life and Business, by Charles Duhigg.  Maybe in this book I can gain some new knowledge that I can apply to my current attempt to get healthier.  I am always looking to learn new things to apply to my life, and I need all the help I can get when it comes to creating healthier eating habits and exercising more regularly.


How have you stopped bad habits and created more healthy habits in your life?

With love, happiness and healthy habits,







A letter to April….

Yes, it is that time of year again…another vacation is around the corner and I am looking at my very no-go bikini bod.  Pale red heads were probably not meant to go to a resort in November.  I mean at least in Summer I had a little color, but if you are a natural red head then that color fades out in about 2 weeks.  So by November I am looking like Snow White.  Needless to say, I need to do some work on myself in the next 6 weeks.  We are talking tan and tone ladies and gents!  So I turned to my beloved friend (whom I have never met in person, but I know we would totally do lunch on a regular basis) in Cali who is obsessed (in a good way) with nutrition and fitness.  I am horrible at sticking to my guns when it comes to eating healthy and exercising regularly.  I mean, I totally come out of the gate like Rocky Balboa…running, weights, competitive and gung-ho 100%!  Then about half-way through week 2 I look in the mirror and think…what the crap?  I have been working my arse off and I look exactly the same!  Screw this, I want a beer and a taco!

So there ya go April, that is the God’s honest truth and I am not proud to admit it, but I am ready to admit I need help.  I am ready the beautiful blonde California girl to motivate me and mold me into something better.  Everything else in life is clicking on all cylinders but my health and fitness has been pushed to the back burner for far too long.  As April guides me through my process I plan to share it with you.  So I plan to be brutally honest with where I am starting and how I progress.  This will not only motivate me to stay accountable but hopefully inspire some of you as well.  Any comments, tips or advice along the way are welcome!

With love, happiness, health and sunscreen


The 10 Day Push



So in exactly 10 days I am leaving on a fun filled vacation with the awesome man in my life.  Today I received my new bikini in the mail and upon trying it on realized that my body could use a little tweaking.  I would love to lose 10 pounds before we leave but I know that is a bit of a lofty goal in only ten days.  However, considering I eat like crap and do not exercise I am thinking if I really push myself I could get reasonably close.  Heck, even if I don’t lose more than 5 pounds I will still look better in my new bikini than I do right now!

Earlier this evening I walked to my guest room, where I keep my lonely treadmill.  That treadmill gets more action from my cat sleeping on it than me running or walking on it for sure!  I jogged for the first time in probably 6 months and did a quick mile.  It did not take me long, it was fairly easy, and it gave me a boost of energy that I did not expect. Since I started back to school, on top of working a full time and part time job, the last thing I want to do at night or in the morning is jog on a treadmill.  With that being said, I know that if I really want to be the confident and happy version of myself on vacation it is probably time to push myself a little.

So I got on the scale this evening and weighed in at 134 pounds and I am 5’7″.  I know that I fall in the normal weight for my height but we all have that magic weight where we know we just really look good in anything. That weight where you can sit on a boat in your bikini and bend over to get the suntan lotion out of your bag and not have to worry about the overhang from your stomach showing to the world.  Yes, in my scrubs at work or a simple t-shirt and jeans those little imperfections are easy to hide but once you are in full sun in nothing but a bikini the truth is revealed!  How about when you are sitting in your beach chair next to your man enjoying the sun and you get super hot and want to head out to the water…the line-up of chairs facing the water is like a big audience of people watching you walk to the water!  They are all looking at your ass and comparing and taking notes!  It makes me want to turn around and do jazzy hands as I back dat ass up to the water!

My goal is to drink only water, (no sodas or alcohol), eat as healthy as possible, (lots of fruits, veggies, and protein) and exercise every day and as much as possible.  If you have any advice for me on this 10 day journey it would be greatly appreciated!  Maybe you have a vacation coming up and you can join me on the 10 day push to get your goal started!


To a happier, healthier you!