I quit drinking about 10.5 years ago. I was really unhappy with my life. I was abusing alcohol. I liked it too much. My job was completely unfulfilling, my friends were questionable at the time and I was pushing away my true friends that cared about me. I knew there was a better path for me and I knew I wanted *much* more out of life. I took a real hard look at myself and craved changed. I was destined for better. (I am choosing to spare you of the horrid nights of blacking out and puking)
I picked up Gabrielle Bernstein’s first book at the time she was launching it – probably around 11-12 years ago. I found her via Twitter, when she randomly followed me. (I’m sure it was a bot trying to promote her new book, but I was curious). It was divine timing and I was led to some of the most beautiful, successful, sober women. At first, I was hesitant, thinking these women cannot be fun. What was life like without bars or a little buzz? I laughed at it at first but then I realized, THEY HAD WHAT I WANT.
Gabby introduced me to my first sponsor, and I committed myself to getting sober after telling Gabby I was *thinking* about it – and put myself on a 3 month sober trial.
Things got clearer. MUCH CLEARER. I was making better decisions for myself. I set up goals. I was focused. I was working on loving myself more than I ever have in my entire life. I worked the AA Steps with my sponsor. I left my job, got a new, then got a new one after that. Life wasn’t easy but the journey was manageable and I grew SO MUCH in the first year. It was worth every sacrifice.
Years go by, and I am still a strong, sober woman. I pinch myself know I haven’t touched a drop of alcohol in over 10 years. I’ve worked so hard on myself. I am honest. I am real and I am the farthest thing from boring. What I do for fun are what I call HEALTHY LIFESTYLE things.
I don’t need to explain myself but I know a lot of people are curious (This post is for you, baby!).
Get better…Feel better…Love yourself and others more. It’s all up to you and I am here to help and guide you however I can! Reach out, get in touch, I am here for you.
I’ve made it through a good portion of 75 Hard and I’ve managed to stay quiet about it for a lot of different reasons. For one, this is my FOURTH attempt at it. I didn’t want to put it out there and only to fail again.
To simplify 75 Hard…it’s (2) 45 minute workouts a day. 1 must be done outside. Read 10 pages of non-fiction a day. Drink 1 gallon of water a day. No cheat meals. Stick to a diet. Take a progress pic of yourself daily (the most hated part of it for me). No alcohol.
So, after reading that, YES IT IS HARD. But it is totally doable and the rewards I’ve seen from this mental challenge is BEYOND my wildest dreams.
Thoughts on the Workouts
The working out part is the easiest part for me, besides the days where it’s just a little busy and you think you can’t make the time….but you can always find a way. I have a strict morning workout routine Monday-Friday and I began taking a 45 minute walk around the park in my neighborhood AS SOON as my work day ends for my second/outside work out. The benefits of the walk outside are ENDLESS – I feel like it’s an intention that the work day has ended…you get fresh air…you feel another burst of energy..you connect with nature and your neighbors…I love it. And I don’t think I’m going to stop it after this challenge ends. It’s THAT therapeutic for me.
Weekends are a bit different, I wake up and have a Nespresso Americano (MY FAVE) and do some reading. I do take long, long walks or runs before the rest of the world wakes up down by the marina here or back in the park. (I wake up at 5AM even on the weekends – it makes Mondays easier). I rotate the other workout with yoga, stretching, the bike, weights…whatever my body is craving.
I HAVE NEVER FELT BETTER.
Thoughts on the Diet
I’m vegan – I’ve been staying vegan throughout this time. There’s ALWAYS tons of improvement needed in my diet, but I eat pretty clean, have my daily smoothie and get in all of the veggies. Do your best. It’s all you can do!
Easy for me – Drink 3 40 oz Hydroflasks a day. Make it work.
Okay – the reading…has been SO BENEFICIAL to my brain. I have always polluted my mind with garbage TV after my work day and it has done nothing for me. This has stopped all together and I just can’t stomach reality anymore. It’s trash – don’t pollute your mind. Read. Books. Instead. Some of the books I’ve read during this thing are The Science of Getting Rich, The Year of Yes, Let Love Rule, Awaken the Giant Within and I’m currently reading Game Changers.
…I’ve been sober 10.5 years… THE END.
The Progress Pic
ugh ugh ugh! I hate this part – but I guess it will be fun to see the progress on Day 75. I try my best to loop it in my routine RIGHT AFTER my work out. I’m trying to wear the same-looking outfit and stand in the same place so there’s actually ways to see the progression.
Wrapping it Up
My final thoughts of this 75 Hard thing on Day 63 are these… THIS IS A MENTAL CHALLENGE AND IT’S MEANT TO BE HARD. My brain and my body have never felt better. The mind shift I’ve felt in the days of the 40’s, is astounding. I realized that I’m in change of my life and there’s areas in it that just aren’t serving me. I started up this blog again, began a partnership with my best friend to bring women healthy products to support their hormones, and I’ve tabled the stuff that just don’t serve me. I can’t stomach negativity or reality TV, or pop culture news. It simply doesn’t feed my soul fire these days.
I want to live the best life possible and I’m so glad 75 Hard as opened my eyes a little wider. I’m grateful for that.
I’ll preface this with – I’ve always been a Size 2, I am very proud of my body through all of it’s twists and turns and changes.
I don’t know what happened. I looked at the scale at some point in 2019 and my weight hit 138+. I was shocked. In my mind, I was always 120, so how did this freakin’ happen? Well, I’ll tell you.
Working in an office with snacks everywhere. Unconscious eating. Taking the hormonal birth control pill unknowing of its side effects. Lack of mindfulness and meditation. No self confidence. Being content.
I knew something had to change. Not that I never DIDN’T exercise, but I needed to step up my game. Like majorly. So, I tried Orangetheory Fitness in January 2019 and I fell in love. The HIIT workouts got me, I started jogging, I made friends and it was great. It completely helped me shed a few LBs and I was getting strong and tone – no doubt. But seriously…with all of that vigorous exercise, you’d swear I’d be a twig. I still was not.
Enter 2020 – the year of crazy adjustments of working from home and COVID scaries. I had an epiphany that this was my time to really explore my health once and for all. I started researching the side effects to hormonal birth control and they weren’t pretty. I also dug into nutrition. I wanted to be plant based more than ever – after way too many attempts before. I dug into books, recipes, supplements.
I WENT OFF THE PILL in July 2020. I thought, I’m home, I really think this is the culprit to me hanging onto excess weight and if shit hit the fan and I felt like ass or mood swings would slap everyone around me in the face (ahem, my husband), I’d be home and in my comfort zone. I also alerted my boss to my potential health crisis. I read so many horror stories in all of these women’s Facebook groups, that I was prepared for anything and everything. I was transitioning my diet before I did all of this for a few months getting off the pill – which helped A LOT)
The results were astounding. Weight shed off me, I felt lighter, I felt so human that I actually had emotions and I was present. My anxiety was at bay – or at least I can pinpoint what was causing it (like, a sudden work issue, COVID, etc.)
Today, I’m at around 117lbs. That’s 23 pounds of the old me shed. I am healthy, happy, and lighter. I’ll save my fitness, diet, and mindfulness routine for another post and I will admit that I’m doing the 75 Hard challenge that has given me more mental results than physical – I’m on day 56 today.
I owe my success to: MY DEDICATION AND AMBITION, Dr. Jolene Brighten’s Post HBC Protocol and supplements, Peloton’s bike and app, daily meditation, reading books of inspiration, goal setting,75 Hard and as cheesy as it sounds, positive mindset. CUT. OUT. THE. TRASH. BEHAVIOR. IN. YOUR. LIFE. (reality TV, IG feeds that don’t fuel your fire and trigger judgement and comparison, even friends that don’t serve you etc.) Oh, and try to SLEEP 8-9 hours a night. It’s more important than you think!
Wherever you’re at in your journey, I’m sending you love and self confidence. If you’re looking for inspiration, let me be your guide. Set goals and write them down.
Yep, it’s old news that 2020 is a shit year. It’s out there and this post isn’t going to rag on 2020 any more. So, if you want more bad news or more negativity to glob onto, move along and click to exit this page on your browser.
All things Corona virus related not included in my love of 2020, but it’s been a really great year.
I started with high intentions, which I always do on every New Years Eve night. I did what I always did. I worked out, continued my mostly-vegan diet and was going into 2020 with a bang as my best year yet. And, honestly, it has been!
Late February, 2 girlfriends boarded a plane to Paris. We began the trip and strangers and returned sisters. I’ve always wanted to travel to Europe. My longing began when I was in college and I kept putting it off and had every excuse in the book. BUT! I took the plunge, booked a solo ticket in August and convinced the gals to join me. The first one to join asked if I wanted company and I said HELL YEAH! These ladies were not even the least bit reluctant to book, so I knew we were all in for a great time, and that it was. Together, we all popped our Europe cherries, walked probably about 20 miles a day through the streets of Paris, learned how to make croissants, went shopping, explored, took photos, shared stories, bought souvenirs and pretended to be the chicest of chic Parisian women. The 10 days with 2 in London were magical and I am so grateful. Present day, we’re all landlocked back in the states but the 3 of us send each others share photos of our trip often and we’re totally grasping onto faith that our next European adventure happens in 2021. All 3 of us have our credit cards and passports ready!
Post European rendezvous, Steve and I got engaged. March 17th – exactly 1 year after we adopted our beloved little Jagger Fergus. Another great day in the books. I’ve kept this private and off of social media because I’m totally not one of THOSE people. (YUCK! – and you TOTALLY know the ones I’m talking about) If you know Steve and I, you know that we are quiet and private people – so this night was perfect. We had a quiet dinner from our favorite local Thai restaurant, he prepared dessert and out came little Jaggy with the ring. A gorgeous channel cut diamond band! (that I totally picked out)
Work: I got a raise this year – and also developed pure work/life balance. I started a brilliant routine! And I’ve written about it. For 2021, I’m working on purpose and passion and achieving financial freedom.
Joining the Peloton family was another great thing that happened in 2020. Never did I ever think I would be a workout from home person, but as I got into it, I LOVE IT. Every morning at 5am, I’m working out with THOUSANDS of like-minded folks just like me getting their morning sweat on. Our house now holds so many weights and work out gear, you’d sweat we had a massive garage to put it all in but we’ve made it work in our guest room/office/now gym/meditation room. I LOST 21 POUNDS AND COUNTING. (please, judgements aside, I’ve always been happy with my body, but this was a goal I set for myself and a lot of it was hormone related and being on the BC pill for so long — more on that another time). Buy a Peloton here and save $100!
MARRIED LIFE: Steve and I tied the know on August 14th. Fast, furious and private. Exactly what we wanted. No circus, no fairy tales, no princess dresses and NO weird posed icky pictures. Those things are all for a different breed of people, NOT US. It was a hot summer day in Norfolk, Steve wore his suit, I wore separates inspired by Olivia Palermo and Carrie Bradshaw’s courthouse wedding. My flowers were from my beloved local Vons Grocery store and my shoes were electric blue and designer… Yes, THOSE shoes.
Those are the highlights – I am really looking forward to a fresh start to the New Year!
I’m in the process of setting goals that I’m excited to share!
…because an AM smoothie is essential in the Lahotski Method
Just a few smoothie recipes that I adore so hard.
Why are smoothies a non-negotiable for me? 1. It’s really hard for me to get my green leafy veggies and this is a super easy and tasty way for me to get them in my daily routine trouble and hassle free. 2. Smoothies are such a great way of cleansing the body after the nighttime fast.
I know smoothies and juices are not allowed on the Engine 2/Plantstrong lifestyle and diet, but for me, it works.
I also know that having all the ingredients on hand daily is a pain point. But I’ve learned to improvise – learn your likes and dislikes and know bananas and greens are always a great idea 🙂
Yep, it all sounds overwhelming – meditating, working out and keeping a sane mind in the midst of a global pandemic that doesn’t seem to be easing up anytime soon.
I’ve been on my wellness journey for over 10 years now. It was Gabby Bernstein’s first book, Add More ~ING to Your Life that rocked my world and I am forever grateful for it. I got sober after being in LA a few years with the help of Gabby and Elisa Hallerman and it just stuck. I did the work, stayed on the course and really found my way. The sober way – a way where I didn’t even think was possible. I didn’t stop being “fun”, I didn’t lose my personality, and the word boring never comes up when talking about me. (Unless you made the judgement already that I’m sober and boring – that’s okay, but take a look at exactly WHY you would judge me. Turn inwards.) okay, no more sober talk, I’ll save that for later.
Even on the path of wellness I have been on for such a long time, I’ve always have been jarred by how the HELL can one human being do ALL of the wellness things. It seems like a lot and honestly, it seemed unachievable. I was envious of the people can get it all done while working a full time job.
Well, folks, I DID IT – Enter Laurie Santos’ class from Yale University via Coursera. LIFE CHANGING. The virtual class is called The Science of Well-Being. The course bought into the why’s of why we do all of these mind-altering things. It’s science backed. I finished the course [roughly] about 50 days ago and have been meditating daily ever since. Also, I’ve been working out and eating super-clean vegan too.
Mind. Body. Soul. Your spirit is waiting for you to dive in! Take the course to make sense of all of this!
Disclaimer: I am a morning person, always have been, I’m pretty sure I always will be. Also, I’m not writing this to frustrate anyone or to invoke comparison; just hoping to inspire and share what works for me. I thrive in a routine.
So, let’s dive into it!
Monday-Friday, the work week for me currently, I wake up at 5am. I sip some water, slap on my Apple watch without even hitting the lights. I get changed right into my workout gear and hit the Peloton hard. A do a series of options that they have: definitely a 30-45 min ride, abs at the end, and a 10 min arms session in between.
Next, I dry brush using Biossance’s dry brush (more on that another time!) I hit the shower, warm water to start to wash my face – then the next 5 minutes in cold, COLD water with Necessairé Sandalwood body wash. This wakes me up and shakes the anxiety right out of me! To finish off…I complete my skin routine – tone, serum, another serum, moisturize, finally SUNSCREEN.Get dressed. I don’t come out of my guest bathroom until this whole thing is DONE. This is so I stay focused and get done quickly.
The lights go on in our house after I’m done with all of that. I feed my favorite, little, furry creature, Jagger – he brings me so much joy – and I make Steve and I smoothies for the next few days. (once again, more on smoothies another time – I have A LOT to say about the topic)
It’s roughly 6:45 at this point, I head into the workspace (the same space where I work out!) – THIS IS THE CRUCIAL STEP – I have a ritual, when it’s time to work, I open the blinds, open the window, turn on the lights + my computer and do an email skim to make sure there’s nothing urgent.
Next – meditate for 10 minutes with incense or copal burning – it’s not negotiable to skip this step.
10-12 minutes later, it’s 7AM and the work day begins! Smoothie at 9am and a mid-morning snack at 10:30.
I’m mesmerized at morning routines – LET ME KNOW YOURS!
This will be just a start to uncovering my wellness journey. It’s a long, never-ending one because I am a student of life. I love learning, I love people, I love food, I love wellness.
The “before” of me was a party animal, glass half empty gal. I was just living an unhealthy lifestyle. I was always searching for the next big thing….more money, better job, better clothes and drinking a lot. There will be more on all of this as I unveil my stories. That’s the point of this site.
Right now, during this crazy quarantined life we’re in, I was guided to take my health head-on, since I have a bit more time on my hands.
The steps I’ve taken now:
Re-committed to a plantstrong lifestyle. For all of you curious warriors, that’s vegan, no added salat, sugar or oil diet. It sounds REALLY overwhelming – but TRUST ME, it’s doable and I am willing to share all of my hacks.
MEDITATE – ever since I’ve made the turn down wellness lane, I’ve dabbled in meditation, never to the extent I’m in now. I do 10 minutes (minimum) daily right before I start my work day
MOVEMENT – move yo’ body daily. That’s it. Nothing fancy. Get moving.
Mind. Body. Soul.
Right now, I’m down 20 pounds from late 2017. Yes, I’ve always been thin, but I was not always healthy.
I have A LOT to share and I am so happy to take a look back on my past and take you along my wellness adventure. It is an honor to inspire others.
Well, I never thought I would say this – but I (Steve too!) adopted a new doggie! His name is Jagger Fergus! He is a 2 year old 5lb Yorkie/Pomeranian mutt that made my heart burst open with so much love that I never knew I had in me!
He is always into some kind of trouble. Clearly, he takes after his mom. He’s chewing on everything, loves eating crumbs off the ground, and running around the house like a maniac. He’s already been to the vet twice and the animal hospital once and last Friday, we got a call from our puppy day care saying that he cut himself by sticking his head through the gate. Yes, this is my child.