NUMBER ONE WEIGHT LOSS SECRET

NUMBER ONE WEIGHT LOSS SECRET

MotMon-Food-Quality

What an amazing week.

My dad’s been hanging out in San Francisco with me all week and boy have we had some serious adventures!  From walking on a tight rope in Dolores Park, to spending the afternoon soaking in all the Gay Pride events.

Hanging out at Dolores Park waking on a tight rope!

Hanging out at Dolores Park waking on a tight rope!

Gay pride shenanigans....

Gay pride shenanigans….

There was also a lot of eating involved.

I’m pretty strict about the types of foods that go in my body, but not from a diet perspective.  You’ll never see me restricting bread or shying away from tortilla chips  or freaking out over sugar.

But you WILL see me throw a big ole’ fit about crap-ass food filled with preservatives, corn syrup, artificial crap, fillers, and all around junk.

The reason I throw a fit is because I know that if I increase the quality of the foods I eat…. and I mean ALL the foods I eat, I know my body will respond in a positive way.

So before you decide to restrict any certain food because you’re trying to “lose weight” or “be healthy”…. try instead to take the food you’re already eating and dramatically increase the quality.

Check out exactly how I did this while my dad was visiting in this week’s training video below:

In the comments section below, add all the different foods you eat and how you’re going to increase the quality of each of them.

Can you get your veggies from a local farmers market instead of from a conventional grocery store?  Can you find a local creamery that offers organic and local dairy instead of something that traveled half way across the country that only Frankenstein would recognize because of all the fake ingredients?

I’ll be in the comments section giving you a “thumbs up” or helping you come up with even better ways you can increase your food quality.

HEALTHIEST PARTY FOOD CHOICES

Last week I shared 5 healthy and delicious party recipes that I made at the last party I threw.

But what if it’s not your party?

I just spent last weekend in Durango CO with all my entrepreneurial friends and while we worked hard all day, we partied hard, too! : )

I take you “behind the party scene” so you can see for yourself all the delicious foods I had to choose from, and then I take you through exactly what I chose and why.

While some I chose for health and others for pleasure, everything I chose was life giving.

While part of enjoying a party is about the food, it’s only a small piece of the whole picture.

In the video training above, I break down the best food choices that are the most nutritious, least inflammatory, and the least likely to jack my blood sugar up (thus keeping my insulin from spicking into a fat-storage lock-down).

But what I DON’T cover in the video is why we go to parties in the first place.

We go to parties for fun, for pleasure, for human connection.  We go for the  adventure of meeting new people.
Now before you start making an assumption about me, I’ll let you in on a secret:  when it comes to parties, I usually have HUGE anxiety.

I’ve never been very good in a social/party scene, so this has almost always led me to two things:

1.  Not even show up to the party and stay home where I can play it safe (me and my Pajamas on a Saturday night).

OR….

2.  Show up to the party and spend the bulk of time hanging around the food table and dessert bar focused on whatever sweet and sugary thing I could get into my body to help ease the anxiety of being there.

Now I’m not saying I still don’t get social anxiety at parties, but the deeper I go into my work, understanding WHY I eat what I eat, the answers are reflected back to me so that I can heal.

The results?

Well, I can usually enter a social situation with ease and grace these days.  In fact the party where I filmed this video training, there were about 80 folks there all of whom I’m just getting to know.

Now I go in with the relaxed intention of being fully present to each interaction and conversation.  I’m truly in the moment and intrigued as I get to know new people.

And it’s magical!  Not just because I’m getting to meet some seriously cool peeps, but also because the food and dessert tables aren’t half as interesting anymore!

In the comments below I really want to know how are you in social situations?

Do you love them or do you avoid them like the plague?
And what are your food patterns at parties?
Does going to a party mean totally blowing every good healthy habit you’ve been striving for?

Join the community and conversation below!

SUMMER PARTY RECIPES!

The statement “I love summer” just doesn’t seem strong enough.  I want to devour it.  I want to subside on 5 hours a sleep a night just so I don’t miss a second of summer.

I come alive in the summer.

And what’s summer without parties?  And what’s a party without food?

When it comes to taking deep care of yourself, one of the easiest ways to do this is to increase the quality of your food.  When my clients want to losing weight, the first thing I have them look at is the quality of their food.

Instead of focusing on taking food away (Ouch! Pain!), we instead take what they’re already doing and figure out a way to increase the quality. (Ahhh….Pleasure!)

So I thought I’d share with you a few recipes from a party I threw last month.  These are simple and delicious party recipes and they’re a HIT!

Check out the short video above showing off my easy, high quality recipes, AND to grab these recipes for yourself.

And while you’re  checking out the vid and grabbing your recipes, make sure join the “online party” by leaving me a comment below!

Here’s what I’d like to know:
Do you have any favorite party foods that are healthy AND delicious party pleasers?  Share them with our community and lets keep increasing our food quality one party at a time!

xoxo, Audra

THE HORRORS OF SWIMSUIT SEASON.

THE HORRORS OF SWIMSUIT SEASON.

All we have to do is remember being a kid.

I remember running around the backyard jetting down a slip-n-slide.  I remember days spent at water parks running around carelessly all day long playing in the water.

As adults we forget that this type of whimsical play is so essential to being human.  But now we add insult to injury because now we’re so self-conscious about being in a swimsuit.

And look at the messages we’re getting.  I love this picture because it shows the power cultural norms can have on us.

swimsuit-season

“How many more summers are you going to miss playing in the water because you have jiggly thighs?  How many more beautiful moments will you miss the water splash over your body, or feelings of floating and fun because you can’t stand the way you look in a swimsuit?”

The Huffington Post put together an article and pictures of real women rocking their swimsuits and loving their summer.

I’ve struggled with my body image for many years.  And the crazy thing about our body image is, size doesn’t matter.  It’s all about our perception.

After finally finding peace with my body, love for my body, and a deep respect for her no matter what size she is, only then could I let go of all the crazy around swimsuit season.

Post surf sesh

Post surf sesh

This picture above was taken when I was in Hawaii.  There was no crazy dieting or attempts to control or contort my body with insane exercise.  This was neither my smallest nor my largest.  Here’s what this picture reminds me of:

  • Getting on my surfboard everyday.
  • Going to a different farmers market everyday for fresh veggies and fruit…
  • Going to the same farmers market for the local cookies, ice cream, or whatever amazing artisan sweet they made. (yup… everyday)
  • Starting my day with a coffee and pastry.  (this alone might be my favorite part of vacation!)
  • Getting ridiculous amounts of sleep.
  • Reading (and napping) on the beach.
  • Wearing a swimsuit from the time I woke up until it was time for bed.
  • In short… that photo reminds me of LIVING MY LIFE.

So as summer is officially upon is, here’s my short list on getting “swimsuit ready”:

  • Get more sleep.  This alone will shift you out of a stressful hormonal state and you’ll be more pleasant overall. : )
  • Get more Vitamin D.  The sun makes us happy.  Wear SPF responsibly by NOT coating yourself all the time.  Let that Vitamin D in so it can work it’s magic.
  • Drink more water.  BOOM!  It’s an instant detox.
  • Go shopping (exactly how you are right now… in all your beautiful splendor) for something that makes you feel beautiful.  Stop waiting.
  • Get your beautiful body out in the sun, to the beach, to the lake, to the pool, to the slip-n-slide… and FROLIC AROUND LIKE YOU’RE 8 ALL OVER AGAIN.

Life’s too short to miss this summer.  Go grab it.

Here’s what I really want you to share with me below:

How will you be enjoying your LIFE and your BODY this swimsuit season?

CHALLENGE TIME!

I don’t know about you, but anytime I participate in some sort of fitness or nutrition challenge, it perks me up, and re-invigorates me along my path.

By no means are they a “magic pill”.  But when you’re committed to improving your life through healthy habit changes, it becomes a life-long journey.  And during that journey, different types of challenges can help keep you traveling the right direction.

Then it hit me like a huge ton of bricks that what I’ve been most successful at in my health, fitness, & nutrition career is getting people pumped up with different challenges!

I’ve run dozens of challenges with literally hundreds of participants each time getting awesome results.  So, It’s time to do it again in a BIG way.

I’m putting together a ton of different 21-day (or 30-day) challenges for you:

Plank Challenge!

Squat Challenge!

Juice & Smoothie Challenge!

Yoga Challenge!

Meditation Challenge!

10,000 steps/day challenge!

The whole idea is to get you (and me) excited to move in the right direction, and to make it do-able.  Anyone can focus on a Squat challenge for 21-days… and then before you know it, you’re rear-end is round and perky, your legs feel strong, and your mind feels accomplished.

All of which positively affects your self-esteem, thus creating an upward spiral of awesomeness!  All that just from squatting!

What a great way to stay connected, build community, and follow through!  It’s the small baby steps that will get you to where you want to go.

The challenges will be a free for all to participate in with prizes to top participants and finishers.

But here’s where you come in.  I’m super stuck and really need your guidance.  I have a a few questions I’d like you to answer:

Does this sound as fun to you as it does to me?

Which challenge would you want to do first?

Do you have other challenge ideas besides the one’s I listed?

I really really (really) want to know what you think.  Can you do me a favor and leave your answers here on the blog?  I will be reading and responding to each and every answer, so let me know!

LESSONS OF LOVE FROM THE DEATH OF MY GRANDMA

LESSONS OF LOVE FROM THE DEATH OF MY GRANDMA

My Grandma Margie passed last week.

Grandma Margie was great at documenting photos. I love seeing her at different ages in her youth. She was married at 17 and had her first child when she was 19

Grandma Margie was great at documenting photos. I love seeing her at different ages in her youth. She was married at 17 and had her first child when she was 19

Since the moment my phone exploded with calls from my family last Tuesday morning, I feel as though I’ve been in an alternate universe.

In this alternate universe, I am being driven by something larger than myself.  I feel my heart expanding, my body pulsating with a “knowing” that is running through my veins.

LOVE this picture. I'm wearing overalls (probably 6 yrs old), my brother, 4, is in front, while my cousins Justin and Amy are on either side of Grandma.

LOVE this picture. I’m wearing overalls (probably 6 yrs old), my brother, 4, is in front, while my cousins Justin and Amy are on either side of Grandma.

My grandmother had a 7th-grade education, was married at 17 and had her first child by the time she was 19.  Babies having babies.

While there’s a lot of love in my family, there’s a lot of dysfunction.  The older men (like grandfathers and great-grandfathers), while they did the best they could, were angry men.  There are stories peppered through both sides of my family of men hitting women.

While I’ve never witnessed any of this, nor have I ever been hit, I have this deep feeling that I’m carrying the burden of my ancestors.  I can actually FEEL my grandmother’s pain and all the pain and suffering of an ancestral lineage born in poverty where it was normal to take out anger on women.

Me and my grandma Thanksgiving 2014. Always smiling and always the jokster. : )

Me and my grandma Thanksgiving 2014. Always smiling and always the jokster. : )

I talk about this candidly right now because what’s come up for me this week is a sense of deep responsibility to the ancestral matriarchy of my past and also to women who will walk on this planet long after I’m gone.

But this feeling of intense responsibility is not only for my Matriarch, but for all the women on this planet: past, present, and future.

Because what my grandmother and many other women in my family have experienced is not special to my family.  It’s a world-wide colossal epidemic of not only seeing the Feminine as inferior, but also thinking it’s okay to hurt Her.

And while yes the Feminine is hurt through physical means, She’s also undermined emotionally, scarred and bruised on the inside where you can’t even see it.

But what’s worse, we as women carry the depth of this physical and emotional abuse, which has been handed to us from the collective consciousness, that says “women are less”.

We take it in, we believe it, and whether or not we personally experience physical or emotional abuse from another doesn’t matter.  It lives inside of us and comes out looking like this:

I’ll hate my body.

I’ll hate and judge her body because she’s bigger than me, then I’ll turn around and hate and judge my body because my body’s not as small as hers.

I don’t trust other women.  I’ll relentlessly judge and critique them.  “Ugh… she’s so emotional!

I don’t trust myself.  I’ll relentlessly judge and critique myself.  “Ugh…why am I so emotional!”

I’ll shovel food in my mouth to pacify the pain.

I’ll force myself to diet and starve…that’ll teach me self-control. “Ha!  That’s what you get for shoveling all that food down your mouth!”

These are but a few examples of how we as women choose to perpetuate the cycles of feminine suffering, and they exist at the macro level.

Ghandi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world”.  How can I ever expect physical and emotional abuse to end for women, when we as women beat ourselves up by hating our body and then go on to beat other women up by hating on them, too?

The Divine message that clearly came to me last week as my grandmother passed was that my life is to be used in service of helping women end their internal abuse and suffering.

I am here to help women be the change they want to see in the world through lessons of deep and radical self-love.

How do I do this?  I’m no scholar.

But I do have extensive training in the worlds of eating psychology, nutrition, yoga, and fitness.  Through these doors I help women who are seeking to heal their mind, heart, and soul, and create a deep loving respectful relationship to their body.

Thank you Grandma Margie for the beautiful and simple life you led.  And even in your death you brought miracles into the world.

I love you.

Have you ever had profound realizations come out of awful situations like death?

In what ways have you healed your own thinking to reflect a more loving way to be toward yourself?

Share in the comments below!