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Monday Challenge

Monday Challenge
Posted on July 21, 2014
Bridgette with hands in hairHappy Monday everyone. I hope you are all well and encouraged for what the day will bring. Today, I am going to workout with my girlfriends, then I am going to take my boys to the Denver Botanic Gardens. There is an exhibit there by Dave Chihuly that is supposed to be beautiful. It’s going to be hot, but I don’t mind. My daughter is away at summer camp, so I thought I’d have a special week with my guys.

My workout will about 24 minutes long this morning, very high intensity. It will be short, sweaty, and sweet. I love sweating. My personal fitness goal for this week is to cut back on my sugar consumption. This means that I will cut back on breads, grains, processed foods of any kind, potatoes, beer and wine, and of course goodies. I will focus on eating healthy proteins, fruits and veggies.

Remember fruit and vegetables give us all the glucose we need for energy. Protein is also an energy source and many people don’t realize that. We have been trained to think of carbs as our primary energy source. Our bodies burn glucose first, fat second, and protein third.

Here is the Monday challenge for you: Pick one or two items in your daily intake and replace them with something healthier like a piece of fruit or just take them out all together. I’m not asking you to take out all carbs, just one or two. Slow change is easier to do than drastic change.

This will not only help you lose weight, but it will also help your body function in a healthier way. Remember excess sugar is not helpful to our bodies at all. I don’t care if it’s agave, honey, maple syrup, white sugar, organic sugar, molasses or whatever. All sugar is bad for you. Maple syrup, honey, and molasses are the only sugars that have minimal health benefits. Sugar is sugar period. Don’t be fooled.

It also doesn’t matter if your bread is white, whole wheat, or gluten free, it all converts to sugar once it enters the body. Bread is simply sugar in a different form. So as you can see, sugar overload can happen quickly. This is something we all need to be aware of and then make our food choices wisely. Sugar reduction is not a bad thing, it just feels hard to do.

If you decide to take the challenge, you won’t be alone, as I will be taking the challenge myself. Here is my plan: Smoothie for breakfast-vega one protein powder, 1/2 banana, unsweetened almond milk, chia seeds, coconut oil, and flax seed. Lunch-salad with protein (I am ordering this at the Botanic Gardens) and Dinner-baked turkey with guacamole and kale salad. You have my word, I will not cheat today. Good luck on your own personal journey.

With all my heart,

Bridgette

Is Sugar Your Master?

Is Sugar Your Master?
Posted on July 16, 2014
We may frequently look down on the alcohoIic, the smoker, or the drug addict, but the rest of us have a much more acceptable addiction. In fact, it is one that is widely accepted. We worship and admire and dream of food. I do it all the time. I consume food in my thoughts, with my eyes, and eventually with my mouth. Since there are literally thousands of pictures of food posted on websites like pinterest and on personal blogs, there is never a shortage of new material for me to consume. There is even a new term for this purveyance of food. It is called food porn.

Food addiction and more specifically sugar addiction is running rampant not only in our society, but also in myself and in my children. I may not be the first one to go for the cookie jar, but I am the first one to go for the potato chip bag.

So even though I don’t need to lose weight, I do need to lose my addiction to sugar. But why does it feel so impossible not to eat sweets and carbs? It feels this way because our bodies literally become addicted to the sugar. The sugar changes our brain chemistry and therefore we are compelled to eat more and more. Sadly, we remain hungry. And to make it even worse, the more sugar you ingest in all of its various forms, the more unhealthy your body becomes. Enter disease.

This may seem a little melodramatic I admit. But watching a loved one die from obesity or from obesity related diseases is no picnic. My father died recently from all food related illnesses. He wasn’t obese, but his body had become a toxic playground. He would’ve lived much longer if he would’ve just changed his diet. But he simply didn’t want to, desire to, or believe he needed to. Such is life. What good are his Hostess Ding Dongs and his Coca-Cola to him now? They were simply his escorts to the grave.

Therefore, take a look at your sugar consumption. Reduce your intake of the white and deadly. I am limiting my intake of sugar because I no longer want it to be my master. Is sugar your master? Think about it.

With all my heart,

Bridgette

Do you Love your Body?

Do you Love your Body?
Posted on May 16, 2014
Loving My BodyMany times when I am on pinterest.com, I see postings of women with very little clothing on with a caption saying something like “Love Your Body” or “Your Body is Beautiful”. I do believe that each one of our bodies has been beautifully crafted, designed and created. However, I do not think our bodies are necessarily beautiful because of how they look, but I think they are beautiful because of what they can do. This is why it is important to love your body.

Over time, age, bearing children, stress, overeating, circumstances, disease and many other factors begin to take a toll on our bodies. They begin to slowly lose some of their youthful luster that they once had. And this is okay. Life happens to all of us and to our bodies. Our bodies do not have a choice but to reap both the good and bad consequences of every choice that we make that directly affects our bodies. Your choices matter to your body. So do you love your body? Do you treat it like a beautifully crafted machine?

I don’t mean do you love how it looks? I mean do you love it? Do you show it love or do you show it neglect and indifference? Do you nourish it properly? Do you keep it clean and well groomed? Do you take it out for a brisk walk or for a jog in the morning? Do you give it enough sleep? This is what it means to really love your body. This is not what the woman in the picture means. She wants you to love what you see when you look in the mirror.

But let’s be blatantly honest. Some of our body parts really aren’t that pretty to look at anymore. Take my boobs for instance. They look okay but they are completely different from when I was 20. Now they are like little raisins. They even float when I sink down into the bathtub. Are they technically beautiful? No they are not and that’s okay with me. I can say it and I know it’s true. I’m not trying to put myself down, I’m just stating a fact. They performed their duty of nourishing three children and now their job is done. Nursing took away some of their aesthetic beauty.

Now if I let the fact that they weren’t perky and full anymore get me down and depressed all the time, then we have a problem. Our focus shouldn’t constantly be on our appearance anyway. It should be more on our functionality. Women have a hard time with this. Many of us have our priorities shifted thinking it is better to look a certain way than to be a certain way. We should think of how we want our bodies to operate smoothly and less about how they look aesthetically.

So can I please challenge you to love your body in this way? Love your body not because of how it looks but because of what it can do. If you don’t love it through your actions then it will cease to perform optimally. It will be tired if you don’t give it sleep and proper nutrition. It will become flabby and weak if you don’t give it exercise. It will eventually become more of a burden to you than a blessing.

And in the meantime, If you want to work on how it looks aesthetically, then go for it. There is nothing wrong with doing that, it’s just that how it looks shouldn’t be your first priority. Your first priority is to love your body and to keep it strong and healthy.

Do you love your body? Think about it.

Bridgette

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