General Reflections

Twenty Years Ago

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Us 20 years agoMe, a recent University of Arizona grad starting a new job – scared and excited about the opportunities that lie ahead.

You, an Arizona native, who had started a few months earlier thanks to your Pops, who left an application on the shop’s chain link fence.

We had both been on our own for many years – navigating our twenties without any sort of plan or guidance.

Ryan introduced us – in the break room.  I remember the warmth you gave off when you smiled. I remember feeling attraction, giddiness, and curiosity.

Our first date Feb 4, 1995– Chinese food, then dancing and drinks. We found out about each other.  I can’t remember a time after that where I didn’t feel special around you.

You ‘got’ me. I ‘got’ you. Our life began to flow.

We moved to VA. Got married in Vegas. Bought the house. Adopted Scully, the dog.

Three years into our marriage, we found out we were having a baby. Neither of us had been around babies growing up. Shocked by the news, we had no idea what to expect. Our family and friends were supportive and excited for us. It was such a fun and happy time.

Hannah Bea came into this world right on her due date. Our lives would never be the same. We became parents. Two years and one month later, Nathaniel Ryan was born. A girl, a boy; our family was complete.

HoaglundsWe became increasingly busy and had more demands put on us. Family, work, and life responsibilities constantly colliding – we began to lose track of time and failed to appreciate how preciously short life can be.

We got a big wake-up call, didn’t we? Cancer reared its ugly head. We quickly shifted the gears of life and put all of our power and energy into getting you well. As with most challenges you have faced, you stepped up with determination, humor and quiet strength.  It wasn’t easy, but you did it. Cancer Free.

Our life began to flow again. A bit different than before the big ‘C’, of course, but strong and steady all the same.  We moved forward with the gift of perspective.

Today, far from perfect, we are happy. We have a sincere affection for each other, rooted in love, laughter and security. There is no one else in this world I trust more or who makes me feel more at home than you.

Twenty years ago today, a wonderful adventure began…

Hoaglunds

Hoaglunds

 

It’s Not About The Food

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Flowers Today marks my third week at my new gig and although I am still very green with knowledge, I’m feeling at home. There is a ton of work to be done and I have the opportunity to make a real difference to the company. I was thinking this weekend, that I feel better. I’m starting to re-engage with some things that were losing my interest which to me is a sign of things getting set straight in my life.

Now for the brutal honesty  – my focus on eating has gone way off the deep end. I can’t really even say I am following paleo at this point. I’m kinda all over the place. I know what I need to do but finding the drive to do it has been tough the past few months. I’m not going to lie either – it has affected my waist line too.  I will need to really stop and listen to figure out what’s really going on with me. Why am I ignoring what I know I need to do? It’s not that the food is so delicious that I can’t control myself –it’s not about the food.

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Be Inspired

Fresh Start Fresh Mind

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  • Saturday: CrossFIt
  • Sunday: Boxing

Complicated Women Are Everywhere

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design yourself - live fit and soreOne more thought to share from the Golden Globes – Maggie Gyllenhaal talked about complicated women and how we are all complicated when it comes down to it. I love that way of putting it – complicated does not have to be negative. I am proud to be complicated – to me it means being interesting, smart, engaging, emotional, passionate, funny, compassionate, and strong. And I would rather be that any day of the week than easy. And Hats off to men who love complicated women!

“When I look around the room at the women who are in here and I think about the performances that I’ve watched this year, what I see actually are women who are sometimes powerful and sometimes not,” she said in her acceptance speech. “Sometimes sexy, sometimes not. Sometimes honorable, sometimes not. And what I think is new is the wealth of roles for actual women in television and in film.”

Today was my last day at XO. While my stay there was short, six months, I learned a lot and met some smart, sharp people. With that said -the role I had wasn’t a good fit for me. It was fine — but not challenging or engaging for me and I just don’t want to accept mediocre anymore. It’s time for me to jump into something new, challenging and fun. I have a few days off before I start on Monday. Here’s to new adventures – fear ain’t got nothing on me.

Yearly Mantra

My sisters shared with me that each year they decide upon a mantra to carry them throughout the year. To motivate, guide and inspire them. A mantra differs from a resolution in that it’s word or short phrase that is repeated mentally, often used to aid in meditation. It can help set your intentions and re-focus so that you develop the habits and become the You you envision. Maybe you want to uncuff yourself from fear or be kinder. Whatever it is – choose it and refer to it often to help reset your thoughts.

mantra live fit and sore

Choosing a Mantra for Your Most Memorable Year

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Happy New Year 2015: Let’s Get Uncomfortable

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Funny-advance-happy-new-year-quote-2015It’s been a good thing for me to step back and really just breathe the past two weeks. I had some family in town, got to enjoy some unencumbered downtime, got my fitness on and just allowed myself to “BE’. There are some big changes in store for me this month that I will share in the next week or so –and I think they are all really good things!!

I have often mentioned how you need to step outside of your comfort zone to really make change happen. With the new year starting, I have started seeing a lot of talk about CHANGE. Change does not just happen though. You have to act, choose, and think differently. And that is where the danger zone is. It’s foreign and uncomfortable to do that. We are so many times driven by fear. What will happen if I do this or that? We fall into what Tony Blauer calls a “fear loop”. And it can paralyze us into inaction. When you feel the fear start to creep and start to take over, that’s when you need to step up and combat it. That takes practice and focus just like any other skill you want to hone. And that of course is also uncomfortable –so don’t fall into the loop of fear and stay in an unhappy, unhealthy situation. Let’s make 2015 OUR YEAR!

Happy New Year 2015

Your Mind Is a Powerful Thing

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If you haven't yet, head over to like my Facebook community page Live Fit and Sore! I've been sharing all sorts of news, information, resources and inspiration over there as well as on here. I figured there can't be too many ways to try to support and inspire others to live a life of wellness...  Tonight is the eve of Christmas eve and the stores were crazy today which made me feel better about being so behind in my preparing. When I went to Costco yesterday to pick up my holiday cards, the guy that rang me up told me that I wasn't alone and then gave me a high five just for getting it done. I liked that attitude...and it was much needed.  This past week has been stressful - in addition to my car needing a lot of work ($$$), Scotty has come down with bronchitis which will no doubt actually turn out to be walking pneumonia as usual. His immune system wasn't great to begin with and seemed to worsen after chemo. He's on some meds and hopefully will be feeling much better tomorrow. We have some serious gift wrapping to do tomorrow evening --  Someone mentioned yesterday that they really get a lot out of the quotes and motivational stuff I post. Hearing that really means a lot to me because the truth is I post them for me --and I figure that I can't be the only one needing some positive words and inspiration to focus on how great life is. I came across this quote this evening...  "If you realized how powerful your thoughts are, you would never think a negative thought."  It's easy to say, but so much harder to actually practice - what we all can do though, is learn to recognize negativity as it starts to creep into our thinking and purposely drive it out.If you haven’t yet, head over to like my Facebook community page Live Fit and Sore! I’ve been sharing all sorts of news, information, resources and inspiration over there as well as on here. I figured there can’t be too many ways to try to support and inspire others to live a life of wellness…

Tonight is the eve of Christmas eve and the stores were crazy today which made me feel better about being so behind in my preparing. When I went to Costco yesterday to pick up my holiday cards, the guy that rang me up told me that I wasn’t alone and then gave me a high five just for getting it done. I liked that attitude…and it was much needed.  This past week has been stressful – in addition to my car needing a lot of work ($$$), Scotty has come down with bronchitis which will no doubt actually turn out to be walking pneumonia as usual. His immune system wasn’t great to begin with and seemed to worsen after chemo. He’s on some meds and hopefully will be feeling much better tomorrow. We have some serious gift wrapping to do tomorrow evening —

Someone mentioned yesterday that they really get a lot out of the quotes and motivational stuff I post. That meant a lot to me because the truth is I post them for me –and figure I can’t be the only one needing positive words and inspiration to help me focus on how great life is.  I have had a ton of ups and downs the past year or so – as so many others have had – and I find reading others’ experienced words helps.

I came across this quote this evening…

“If you realized how powerful your thoughts are, you would never think a negative thought.”

It’s easy to say, but much harder to actually practice – what we can do though, is learn to recognize negativity as it starts to creep into our thinking and purposely drive it out.  Here are some other ideas to put into practice to help you up your game: How to Stay Positive: 11 Smart Habits. I know some of you out there don’t believe that there is power in positive thinking or that setting positive intentions each and every day can help make your life brighter – that’s OK.  Some of the quotes & inspirational sayings are bullshit for sure– but the ones that speak to me, I share. We have a choice in how we see the world. Life is challenging enough, why not face the challenge with inspiration and purpose?

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One Direction stops by the Tonight Show Music Room to perform “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town.”

Fitness

Boxing 1hour 6A

 

Fake It To Make It So

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I have always said I wouldn’t sugar coat my wellness journey – there are ups and downs. I seem to be in a valley right now…

I’m having a rough time as of late. I feel beaten up.  I have just a sense of blah around most things in my life right now. I’ve been trying to sit back and reflect on it though. Could it be the mid-life crisis that people talk about?

I’m in my early 40’s, although closer to mid 40’s than I sometimes realize – I’ve been in the VA area since 1996. I’ve had ups and downs career wise. I’ve gotten married, had kids, and helped my husband battle a serious health issue. I live in a nice suburban area, own my home – my kids are fed, receiving a great education, have family that loves them. Same can be said about me – I have a great husband who is my biggest champion, my kids are amazing – so, why do I feel lonely and unfulfilled lately?

fake-it-till-you-make-it

I feel unconnected and bored – not really feeling close to many people around me. I‘m having issues staying on point with my nutrition as well. I feel like a big blob and have been making excuses for eating crap.

I believe that in the idea “fake it until you make it“, surround yourself with positive people and words. Being down and being around a bunch of Debby Downer people and thoughts doesn’t do anything to help pull you out.

Positive Life

What Would You Tell Your Younger Self?

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what would you tell your younger self

I saw this posted question the other day and it made me pause. It’s an interesting question to ponder.

Now that my daughter is entering her teen years and has started to experience all that goes with it, it has put me in a reflective mood. She has already begun dealing with friend drama, body image worries, and embarrassing parents.  I want to let her experience things without being a helicopter parent, but also benefit from the knowledge that I have. I didn’t have a picture perfect childhood and want to do whatever I can to prevent her from experiencing some of it.  I see traits in her personality that mirror mine and it worries me sometimes.  I know there is only so much I can do as her mom – sigh…

As for me answering that question – I would tell myself to not let fear control my decisions. I was always so scared of being uncomfortable, craved stability and that made me so rigid. I saw things one way and that was it – wasn’t open to trying anything new and was so scared to just take a chance.  How about you?

Oh and I would definitely tell myself to start exercising as an outlet for stress – I often wish I was in shape from the onset!

11 Things I Wish I Could Say To My Younger Self

Be Proud

 

Obesity at Disney: A Snapshot of Our World

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It was changeconfront6 years ago, during my last trip to Disney,  I started to get my ass in gear and began taking care of myself. Having just gotten back a few days ago from my family’s latest trip there, it became clear to me how many people in the world need to do the same.

Before I go off on a rant about my observations, I want to preface it with the following: Everyone, no matter who they are, what size they are, where they come from, how much money they make, deserves to be treated with kindness and respect.

It seemed to me that something like 80% of the visitors to Disney were overweight. Every park, every hotel; There was an exorbitant amount of seriously obese people everywhere I went. And 9 out of 10 people who were using scooters, were obese.

I guess I live somewhat of a sheltered life in that my social circles – it’s not the norm. Don’t get me wrong – there are plenty of people who could stand to lose some weight and/or get moving but that’s not what I am talking about. The shock was how many out of control obese people were there.  Before someone points out that it’s an economic thing – these were people visiting Disney! It’s not exactly the definition of affordable.

There are a few things that upset me about seeing this microcosm of our world:

  1. For a majority of the morbidly obese, something in their lives is out of control. It’s not about the food, it’s about what’s going on in their head. To see how many people are so out of control in their lives was shocking.
  2. I understand that everyone has a story and you can’t tell what’s going on in someone else’s world by looking, but it appeared that many of them seem resigned to accept their circumstances. They are obese, it is what it is and they ‘live’ with it. They eat the processed, crap, junk food as if that’s how you should eat.
  3. To add on to my second point above, renting scooters instead of walking isn’t going to help anyone’s situation. I pointed out to my daughter that the average human skeleton isn’t designed to carry a ton of extra weight. It’s hard on the knees, feet – joints in general so I understand the reasons for renting a scooter but there were so many of them in the parks during my visit. So many of the obese people I saw were also in scooters.
  4. They are passing bad habits on to their children. Obviously, being at Disney, there are a ton of parents. It was clear that children are growing up learning their parents’ bad habits. Many of the obese adults I saw had children who were also dealing with their own obesity issues.
  5. While everyone is free to live the way they want, it’s a fact that obesity costs everyone. “The estimated annual health care costs of obesity-related illness are a staggering $190.2 billion or nearly 21% of annual medical spending in the United States. Childhood obesity alone is responsible for $14 billion in direct medical costs.”  PhitAmerica compiled 10 Flabbergasting Costs of America’s Obesity Epidemic that really highlights how obesity isn’t just a personal issue.

While I am totally for splurging while on vacation and Disney is a great place to do that – it is possible to eat healthy there…

The resort we stayed at Port Orleans: French Quarter had a fridge that had containers of fresh fruit and veggies available during all hours in their restaurant. I also noticed that each ‘quick snack’ store also had some options available. Also, if you have any special dietary needs, you simply ask for the Chef. The Chef will come out to discuss your needs and try his/her best to accommodate what you need. We tested it each and every morning with my son’s gluten allergy. I also brought some single serve Justin’s Almond Butter with me so I could dip fresh apples or celery in it for a quick, healthy breakfast or snack during the trip.

So, what’s my point? It was shock to me to see how many people are so out of control in their lives that they let themselves go to that extent. It was shocking, sad and made me angry too. We all have to take personal responsibility for who we are in this world.

Is the obesity epidemic caused by lack of education? is it because of economics?  Is it generational? Yes, yes and yes but does that make it right? No.

We need to participate in the discussion and come up with innovative, strong ways to address it – together.

Fake It Until You Make It

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I’ve always said that I will be honest when I take to this blog — the triumphs, the struggles, the shit times and the great moments of my life. So be warned…

The past few months I’ve been struggling. Struggling to remain focused. Struggling to get my ass in gear — I’m not sure what’s up with me.  have been making bad food choices on the regular even though I can tell they are wreaking havoc on my body.  I’ve been having crappy workouts –and even hit the snooze or skip the alarm all together, letting sleep win over working out at 6A.  I lost my mojo for CrossFit, have been doing boxing – which I love but it’s not giving me the workout ‘high’ I need every time. And it’s hard to get my body warmed up and full engaged to box at 6A.

I’ve been losing focus on things I have always loved which seems to make things worse. Before you tell me, I am going to talk with my doctor about my changing mood — but it’s an odd feeling. You know you ‘should’ do certain things and ‘want’ to do them but the effort to do them seems exhausting. Even calling the doctor at the first sign of trouble.. does that make sense?

Getting used to working full time is tough too. The entire house has to readjust to Mom not being home all the time to take care of the little things. Some days it seems overwhelming — I know I am being a Debbie Downer but not every day is sunshine and rainbows. I try to live by the Fake it until you Make it motto but some days it gets to me. Today is one of those days…

I am searching for a way to feel re-energized and refocused and so far haven’t had a ton of luck…

Me as Darth Vader

Halloween Party 2014

We are headed out on vacation at the end of this week to a sunny location so perhaps that will lighten my mood and of course even when I am not feeling like it – I hit the gym. I always feel better afterwards. Even a bad workout is a good workout.

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Get off Your Ass

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Boxing – Weds, Thurs, Sun, Monday

Tell Your Story and Let It Go

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I regularly read the musings of an entrepreneur, writer James Altucher. He seems to have a really good perspective and gives good advice.

 Here’s a short excerpt from the Post by James Altucher.

How do you prepare for a good death?

I think we live in four dimensions at the same time.

The physical world, where we can get stabbed in the heart and bleed. The emotional world, where we can get stabbed in the heart and cry.

The mental world, where we can get stabbed in the head and get demented. And the spiritual world where we get stuck living in the past, filled with regret and anxiety.

Stress is the knife of the emotional world. Stress leads to inflammation of the cells (again, I’m a doctor).

The major causes of death in the US: heart attacks, cancer, strokes, Alzheimers – all caused by inflammation. And then diseases caused by smoking. Don’t smoke.

If all you do is work on ways to reduce stress, avoid time travel (obsessing on past and future), and of course, don’t smoke, then you will start preparing for a good death.

Everyone wraps themselves in their dramas: their friends, their family, their divorces, their failures. We build up a mythology of our misery. The pantheon of people who “did this to us”.

Can you take a break from that for today? Just today please. And then maybe tomorrow. If you can’t, then text me why.

Because the truth is:

Nobody did anything to you.

Except your mother.

One of the comments left really spoke to me and it’s something I am going to put into practice…

I did a workshop with a great life coach more than a decade ago, which focused on how people create their personal narratives, and she said she had a rule that she would only tell a story to other people 3 times and after that she’d let it go because to keep re-telling gave it far too much weight and life and kept her from moving on. I try to remember that rule when there is drama in my life; it really does minimize stress, regret and anxiety.

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