Okay Challengers…..last week is upon us. The challenge ends next week: you can wake up on Feb 13th and cheat a little. ; )

That said…like I repeat through this blog’s life span: I don’t believe in diets, I believe in changing life style! When I say ‘cheat’ I mean go ahead and have that brownie, cookie, fries if that’s what you’re craving but you need to balance that out with a lighter meal at some point that day, and some extra exercise. I indulge my love of chocolate often, but I also train more than most people due to my life as an ashtanga yoga teacher. This last month I was dealing with a prolonged cold so this challenge is just what the doctor ordered: not only have I kicked my sinus infection sans antibiotics but all the healthy food/Arbonne immunity boosters & protein shakes/green drinks and vitamin C have me back in from running and practicing again. Yay!! Not a moment too soon: the Holiday season indulgence and Jan cold induced napping means I had work to do.

I’m hearing from my challengers that exercise has been the biggest issue not so much diet. Not surprising given the weather where I am…cold, and short days. My advice is two-fold: 1) If you live where I do (Canada) winter is a part of life…get the parka out, the boots, the hat/gloves and take a walk in the snow. Look at it this way..if there is a lot of snow the walking is more challenging…like running on the beach. You also burn more calories in the winter as your body is working hard at keeping warm: bonus! 2) Find something indoors you can do to escape the cold and burn some calories. I turn to yoga (it’s always warm in our studio) but you can hit a gym, a local indoor pool or even pop a DVD in and do something at home. In the age of Wii fit etc there are no excuses! If you live in small condo or apartment–run the stairs (that’s what I did when I lived in a condo).

Since this post started with thoughts of ‘cheating’ here is a cheat you can feel good about…it’s a healthy cookie. Really! No sugar, lots of fibre from the oats, protein from the nuts and there is so much good to say about both bananas and dark chocolate. This recipe again comes from Heidi Swanson…..Can you tell I love her blog/cookbook? I took these to an Arbonne leadership training event on Sat and the team demolished them in minutes.



Okay folks…we’re so close! Then again, this is often where it can be the most challenging…especially if you’ve gone all out/full detox. I haven’t been doing full detox this go round but going into this week I will be-so I can totally empathize if that’s where you are. I have a full on week: still fighting this sinus infection (getting there…sloooowly), teaching extra yoga classes and I have a trade show for 3 days this week. Busy, busy. So I’ll be vigilant with my Arbonne immunity booster, Arbonne protein shakes, lots of vit C, raw honey, my Spirulina greens drink, and a detox style food plan this week. Also going to try to get some running in there since the deep freeze is leaving us temporarily in this next of the woods (hello cabin fever!?)

How are you doing? How is the food plan coming? How about the exercise count this week? It can be very hard to hit the gym etc in Jan but I’m noticing in the last week folks are coming out of the winter coma…my yoga classes definitely saw a spike in attendance this week. I think with Feb looming folks realize spring may not be so far away after all.

As always if you need any help, if you have questions, if you want to know more about how Arbonne can help you hit your fitness goal please do email me.

In the mean time here is another recipe, this works for lunch or as a side to some fish or other lean protein for dinner. AND it even fits within a full detox plan!! Now the original recipe calls for this side dish to accompany some rare steak but I had it with an arugula salad, heirloom tomatoes, and an olive oil/lemon vinaigrette (3 to 1 ratio oil to acid) for a healthy satisfying lunch. Who knew one could love the lima bean so much! Thank you Jamie Oliver!



In health and happiness my friends….

A week in challengers? How are you doing? How are the fitness goals going? Are you checking in with your accountability partner? Are you keeping track of how often you move (taking the stairs instead of the elevator counts….write that down!)

How about the food front? I don’t like saying diet because I strongly believe it’s about lifestyle, not ‘a diet’ but you get the idea. ; ) This week I want to talk about breakfast–the most important meal of the day and about supplements. (as I’m currently fighting a bad cold this is top of mind for me).

This week I’m posting 2 great recipes that fall under which ever version of this challenge you’re doing (either the whole hog detox or just a healthy whole foods versions)

If you’re going full detox (no refined sugar, no wheat/gluten, no dairy etc) then one of your best bets is oats. Steel cut oats are my pick because they are the least refined and will keep you feeling full until lunchtime. Don’t be scared off by the long cooking time you can make a batch on the weekend and reheat small daily batches at work (this is what I used to do when detoxing in a 9 to 5 environment)

Steel Cut Oats:
1 cup oats
3 cups water
pinch of salt

Bring the water to a boil, add the oats and boil for 20/30 min or until softened. Add a pinch off salt and you’re ready to add your toppings.

Almond Milk
Raisins/Cranberries/any dried or fresh fruit you like
maple syrup or honey (non refined sweetener and full of nutrients)


Millet Muffins (Courtesy of Heidi Swanson’s book “Super Natural Every Day”)
**note these can even fall into your detox if you swap out the butter for coconut oil: I’m trying that version this week, stay tuned!


And finally as I’m fighting a cold with all I’ve got (no voice and no energy is not a great combo when you are a yoga teacher….and ashtanga teacher at that!) I’m getting lots of sleep (more than normal), drinking lots of warms drinks of warm raw honey and lemon (honey has so many anti-bacterial properties), tons of vitamin C (more than directed), green drinks of Spirulina (ugh, but it works) and this power house from my lovely Arbonne company: The new to Canada Immunity booster! Sadly got sick before I started taking it but I plan to stay on it all winter/spring so I can keep up with my amazing students at Beach Yoga Centre. If you have any questions about this great wellness item message me. I can keep you updated on my progress with it and fighting off anymore winter colds.


Okay Challengers….as promised, a new lean/healthy you for 2013 starts right now. Over the next 30 days I’m going to post progress, challenges, recipes, and just give general tips to help you stay on track to your goal. 

Step One: Set your Goal

What’s your goal for this challenge? Inches lost? Manage the Damage from the holiday season? Health issues to keep in check (ie: diabetes)? A Fitness goal (5K, 10K, walk every night?)? What every your goal is…WRITE IT DOWN and share it with someone. I would love to hear what your goals are….email me and I’ll be your cheerleader! Share it with family, share it on Facebook! You are more likely to reach goals when you write them down!!

Step two: How? What is your strategy?

Your strategy needs to be two fold: manage what you eat and manage how you move. You cannot live a healthy lifestyle by lying on the couch and thinking about what you’re not doing. You need to move!! Whether it’s simply walking, running, biking, sports, swimming, yoga..find something you enjoy and better yet: find a person to do it with. You also need to manage what you eat. For this next 30 days I recommend you approach it one of two ways:

  • Full detox: No sugar, dairy, meat, alcohol, wheat, caffeine. I have done this method in the past and it is good if you are feeling run down/if you feel you need a kick start. You would then eat as ‘clean’ as possible for the next month. I’ve posted about this in past blogs and if you have further questions let me know.
  • Healthy/Lean diet: This is the method I’ll be going with which is essentially how I eat all the time but a little more restricted. Whole grains, lean protein (fish, lentils etc), lots of fruit & veg, limited dairy (mostly yogurt if anything) and limited caffeine/alcohol. I also plan to kick start my challenge with a lot of help from Arbonne. Their products can help on both of the methods I’m mentioning here and I can help you get started with their amazing wellness line (vegan and gluten free I might add!)


Step Three: Get an accountability Partner!!

This can me (I’d LOVE to hear your goals and be updated on your progress) or it can be a friend, family member, co-worker. Pick someone who will keep you in check and cheer you on. Back to those goals–give your accountability partner your goals and set up a weekly check in (either in person or by phone) so that you can stay on track. 

Okay that’s it for tonight. Either sign up to follow this blog (you get automatic updates, I will email out updates but if you sign up you’re guaranteed to not miss anything) or check back often! I’ll be posting my progress, recipes etc.

One more thing…my goal! I don’t have a true weight loss goal due to the fact that teaching and practicing ashtanga yoga pretty much keeps me in check..that said, I do have some damage to manage post holiday and I’m finding I need to re-evaluate my diet to keep my energy levels up to teach/run my businesses etc. So…my goals are:

Practice: 4 times a week

Run: 2 a week

Diet: I’m doing version two and that will include having Arbonne protein shakes once a day in lieu of a meal (note: I find the meal to replace is the one you find the hardest to fit in/eat healthy depending on lifestyle which is lunch or dinner depending on the day of the week for me). This should help shave an inch off all around which should repair the damage I did in Dec. ; )

Good luck! Any questions….I’d love to hear from you!

Be well 🙂

Happy New Year!! Welcome to 2013!! Where do you want to see yourself in 30 days? 30 weeks? Join us for a new 30 day challenge! Much like I stressed in last year’s challenge I don’t want the 30 challenge to be a fad, a diet, a once a year thing. I want it to either kick start, re-ignite or just be your way of life. Post holiday season is always a good time for a challenge if you spent it anything like me: a lot of chocolate, rich food, wine, cheese, socializing and couch time. Tis the season for influenza also and if you’re like me you may currently be down and out with a cold post holiday season. I’m on day 8 of a knock down drag out cold. I wanted some downtime…I certainly got it. So for me I’m using this round of a challenge to get my body back into fighting form. Many things have changed in my life since the last post (look for more on that in my new sister blog to this call ‘finding brave’…stay tuned on that), but one of the main reasons I can’t afford to be sick these days is because I’m now teaching ashtanga yoga. Yoga teachers don’t get sick days!

Officially we’ll get started next week: January 14th, but you can started now, or anytime you like and go for 30 days. I really started last week thanks to my cold/flu and I’ll go for as long as it takes to get this out of my system! It’s always more fun to do this as a group so please join us. All you have to do is contact me with your goal and let me know if you would like to use the amazing Arbonne line to support you in this journey. I am using the shakes, fibre boost, fizz tabs, herbal tea, immunity boosters and vitamins in my full arsenal but you can pick and choose what products you think will help you.

You’ll find the full wellness line at: https://www.arbonne.ca/shop_online/shopOnline.asp

Any questions…just ask! Cheers to a healthier, leaner you in 2013!!


We’re here–it’s the end of 30 days! How are you feeling? Did you hit your goals? Are you inspired to keep going? No matter where you are in your journey to get healthy be proud of the fact that you’re making the effort and celebrate success (no matter how small it may seem!). So you’ve hit the 30 days….now what? Some of you came in a week late….what happens after next week.

Here’s the thing: I’ve lived a fairly healthy lifestyle most of my life but I’d say in the last 5 years or so I’ve really started to pay attention to what I eat/drink etc. For me this is a way of life, not just 30 days. (although I like doing challenges to get a little kick start to a season) Since I’ve had more people read my blog/forward questions then I really expected I ‘m going to keep blogging–might need to change the name/create a new site (Any and all suggestions for a title welcome!). I’ll post recipes, food facts, updated information on the great Arbonne products that can help you on your journey etc. I’m happy to share what I do on an every day basis so stay tuned!!

Some blogs and books I like–good place to start:




Any of the books by Michael Pollen

I love my cookbooks by Ina Garten (Barefoot Contessa and YES I know she cooks with pounds of butter but there are ways to lighten up her recipes, not all involved butter and salt and they are fool proof…also like is too short to never eat another piece of regular white flour cake) and Jamie Oliver (love, always work out). I will post later some of my modified recipes from these two.

There are lots more but I’ll just start with those…..

What I achieved in 30 days:

Back on track for practicing ashtanga yoga and running (5 days a week is my goal and I’m keeping it)

I don’t weight myself I go in inches–lost another inch of my waist and hips. Yay!

80/20 rule with my food. 80% of the time I really watch it (maybe even 90%) but the rest of the time…..like I said in previous blogs…I’m never giving up almond croissants from Brick Street Bakery….ever.

Let me know how you did challengers!! There is a prize for being the biggest loser remember….stay tuned for an announcement of the winner!




Hi Challengers, How is it going? 3 weeks tomorrow…the final stretch. I’ve been ‘grounded’ so to speak in terms of exercise so I have to up to game food choice wise over the next week and possibly beyond the challenge date. Here’s the thing, beyond May 10th I still plan to live like this–this really is my lifestyle all the time. When you choose to make healthier choices 90% of the time, exercise 100% of the time, you can enjoy that extra piece of chocolate once in a while, that glass of wine, that pasta with truffle oil and cream sauce at a fav gastro pub once in a while (Prohibition–Queen East–get the mac and cheese). So I’ve been somewhat set back in terms of exercise for the next week or so. I had Lasik eye surgery last week and a requirement of recovery is no exercise for a week. This means no Ashtanga yoga, no running..nada. I have complications from the surgery (eye infection) so I could be looking at longer for time off from exercise. This is very foreign to me so I’m really taking the time to prep my fridge/pantry this week to accommodate the lack of physical exercise.

What does this look like? I’m roasting off some chicken breasts tonight to throw in salads, lots of my chickpea salad, green salad with chicken and a little avocado, lots of veggies/fruit, my gluten free/full of protein breakfast creations and (thank you Arbonne) I’m likely going to 2 shakes a day for the next couple of weeks. I have a Vegas trip coming up this summer and I need to look good by that pool so I need to get to work now. ; )

How about you? I know there are a few of you reading my posts but not yet ready to do the challenge (You know who you are!)….that’s okay, I plan to do more…you’ve been warned!! There is male client of mine who has lost 35 pounds and is loving his gluten free lifestyle…if you want to know more about him/ask him how he did it…well drop me a line and I can put you in touch.

Another gluten free option for those of you (like me) that would like some pastry-esque options during this challenge. I made gluten free blueberry muffins this week another batch of my quinoa breakfast bars. Yum!! This and an Arbonne chocolate shake with almond milk get me through my mornings these days.

Recipe this week:


As always, email/call me if you have questions/concerns/feedback. And keep up the great work!!